Proteases, Extracellular Matrix, and Cancer: A Workshop of the Path B Study Section

Yves A. DeClerck, Arthur M. Mercurio, M. Sharon Stack, Harold A. Chapman, Mary M. Zutter, Ruth J. Muschel, Avraham Raz, Lynn M. Matrisian, Bonnie F. Sloane, Agnes Noel, Mary J. Hendrix, Lisa Coussens, Martin Padarathsingh

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

204 Scopus citations


The role of the extracellular matrix (ECM) in the tumor microenvironment is not limited to being a barrier against tumor invasion. The ECM is a reservoir of cell binding proteins and growth factors that affect tumor cell behavior. It is also substantially modified by proteases produced by tumor cells or stroma cells. As a result of the activity of these proteases, cell-cell and cell-ECM interactions are altered, new biologically active ECM molecules are generated, and the bioavailability and activity of many growth factors, growth factor receptors, and cytokines are modified. ECM-degrading proteases also play a critical role in angiogenesis, where they can act as positive as well as negative regulators of endothelial cell proliferation and vascular morphogenesis. This review article summarizes some of the most relevant findings made over the recent years that were discussed at a workshop organized by the Path B Study Section of the National Institutes of Health in October 2002.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1131-1139
Number of pages9
JournalAmerican Journal of Pathology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2004
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine


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