Metalloproteinases and human placental invasiveness

Placenta. 2006 Aug;27(8):783-93. doi: 10.1016/j.placenta.2005.08.006. Epub 2005 Oct 24.


Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are the main mediators of extracellular matrix degradation. This confers an important role to these enzymes in the invasion of the trophoblast cells where their expression are spatiotemporally regulated. The regulation of MMPs activity is complex and is established at different levels. Their expressions depend on various cis-elements in their gene promoter, and are induced or repressed by various soluble factors. After expression and secretion, the proMMPs must be activated through an activation network. Then, the enzyme activity is regulated by inhibition or stabilization. In this review, we shall focus on the expression, the role in invasion and the regulation of MMPs in the human placenta.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Adhesion
  • Cell Communication
  • Enzyme Activation
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic*
  • Humans
  • Matrix Metalloproteinase Inhibitors
  • Matrix Metalloproteinases / genetics*
  • Matrix Metalloproteinases / metabolism
  • Placentation* / genetics
  • Pregnancy
  • Trophoblasts / enzymology*


  • Matrix Metalloproteinase Inhibitors
  • Matrix Metalloproteinases