Matrix Metalloproteinases as Key Regulators of Tumor–Bone Interaction

  • Conor C. Lynch
  • Lynn M. Matrisian


Bone metastasis is a common occurrence for several tumor types. In the tumor-bone microenvironment, tumor cells manipulate the normal cells of the bone to promote bone resorption and the release of sequestered growth factors from the bone matrix. In turn, these factors support tumor growth, thus completing what has been described as the vicious cycle. Despite medical advances, the treatment options for patients with metastatic bone disease are limited and are often palliative rather than curative. Clearly, new therapies that will prevent the vicious cycle are required. To achieve this, a better understanding of how tumor cells communicate with the normal host cells of the bone is necessary. Given the evidence accumulated over the last decade, it has become clear that matrix metalloproteinases and other proteinase members of the metzincin family are important players in the execution of the vicious cycle. This chapter will focus on how matrix metalloproteinases can control cell–cell communication at the tumor–bone interface via the processing of matrix and nonmatrix substrates.


Bone Metastasis Bone Matrix Vicious Cycle Metastatic Tumor Cell Bone Interface 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  • Conor C. Lynch
    • 1
  • Lynn M. Matrisian
    • 2
  1. 1.Departments of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation and Cancer BiologyVanderbilt UniversityNashvilleUSA
  2. 2.Department of Cancer BiologyVanderbilt UniversityNashvilleUSA

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