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Oncol Res. 1993;5(1):19-28.

Patterns of expression of metalloproteinases and their inhibitors in human malignant lymphomas.

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Department of Pathology, University of Calgary, Alberta, Canada.


Forty-two cases of malignant lymphomas were studied for the expression of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) and their tissue inhibitors (TIMPs) by Northern blot and in situ hybridization. The lymphomas were classified according to Working Formulation classification (25 high grade, 15 low grade, and 2 intermediate grade). The MMPs studied included: 72-kDa and 92-kDa gelatinases (type IV collagenases), interstitial collagenase, PUMP-1 (MMP-7), and stromelysins 1 and 3. TIMPs included TIMP-1 and TIMP-2. All but one case expressed TIMP-1, and TIMP-2 transcripts were detected in 35 cases. Among the MMPs, 92-kDa gelatinase was expressed most consistently (35 cases), whereas mRNA transcripts of 72-kDa gelatinase, interstitial collagenase, and PUMP-1 were detected in only a few cases. Stromelysins 1 and 3 mRNAs were not detected in any of the tumors studied. However, marked differences in the level of expression of certain MMPs and TIMPs were found among different grades of malignant lymphomas. The low grade tumors expressed low and relatively constant levels of TIMP-1, TIMP-2, and 92-kDa gelatinase transcripts, whereas high grade lymphomas displayed variable amounts of mRNAs for TIMPs and MMPs, with a trend toward elevated TIMP-1 and 92-kDa gelatinase mRNA levels. In situ hybridization localized TIMP-1 transcripts to stromal cells, while 92-kDa gelatinase transcripts were most abundant in "starry sky" macrophages and large lymphoma cells. Zymography showed that active 92-kDa gelatinase is present in tumor protein extracts and differences in the level of the enzymatic activity were seen between low and high grade lymphomas. Our data indicate that 92-kDa gelatinase and TIMP-1 expression by human malignant lymphomas may play an important role in controlling their biologic aggressiveness.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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