Mechanisms for Organ Specific Metastasis, in Particular from the Gastro-Intestinal Tract to the Liver

  • Max M. Burger
Conference paper


Highly metastasizing cells display some general characteristics compared to poorly metastasizing cells. They adhere less to each other, they produce and release enzymes which degrade their surroundings and they have a tendency to deform easier. Any of these properties or several of them together could be shown to promote metastasis in animal model systems. Organ-specific metastasis, as e.g. to the liver, was thought to be due to increased adhesion to the endothelial cells, the vascular basal membrane or the parenchymal cells of the target organ liver. Here an additional mechanism could be identified, namely liver-specific growth promotion by a liver cell membrane-specific growth factor. In the final section the recent literature on liver-specific metastasis mechanisms was reviewed including some comments on a possible cross-talk between metastasizing cells and their surrounding host organ cells.


Melanoma Cell Sialic Acid Human Colon Carcinoma Cell Liver Parenchymal Cell Mouse Embryo Fibroblast 
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-Verlag Tokyo 1993

Authors and Affiliations

  • Max M. Burger
    • 1
  1. 1.Friedrich-Miescher-Institute and Biocenter of the University of BaselBaselSwitzerland

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