3 years ago

Role of the extracellular matrix in cancer-associated epithelial to mesenchymal transition phenomenon

Ioanna Spyridaki, Aikaterini Berdiaki, Kallirroi Voudouri, Dragana Nikitovic, Rafaela-Maria Kavasi, Aristidis Tsatsakis, George Tzanakakis
The epithelial to mesenchymal transition (EMT) program is a crucial component in the processes of morphogenesis and embryonic development. The transition of epithelial to mesenchymal phenotype is associated with numerous structural and functional changes, including loss of cell polarity and tight cell–cell junctions, the acquisition of invasive abilities, and the expression of mesenchymal proteins. The switch between the two phenotypes is involved in human pathology and is crucial for cancer progression. Extracellular matrices (ECMs) are multi-component networks that surround cells in tissues. These networks are obligatory for cell survival, growth, and differentiation as well as tissue organization. Indeed, the ECM suprastructure, in addition to its supportive role, can process and deliver a plethora of signals to cells, which ultimately regulate their behavior. Importantly, the ECM derived signals are critically involved in the process of EMT during tumorigenesis. This review discusses the multilayer interaction between the ECM and the EMT process, focusing on contributions of discrete mediators, a strategy that may identify novel potential target molecules. Developmental Dynamics, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

Publisher URL: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/resolve/doi

DOI: 10.1002/dvdy.24557

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