Cell motility and cytoskeletal regulation in invasion and metastasis

J Mammary Gland Biol Neoplasia. 2007 Sep;12(2-3):143-52. doi: 10.1007/s10911-007-9046-4.


Cell motility and chemotaxis can make important contributions to the metastatic cascade. Cell migration pathways in general play significant roles in a variety of physiological processes that can be "hijacked" by cancer cells. Both growth factors and chemokines provide important chemotactic signals in development and metastasis. Receptor activation, following binding of a growth factor or a chemokine, leads to dynamic morphological changes in the actin cytoskeleton network via a variety of distinct and interconnected pathways, resulting in translocation of the cell up a chemoattractant gradient. Such gradients may be produced by stromal cells in the local microenvironment, including macrophages and fibroblasts. A better understanding of the mechanisms of cell motility and cytoskeletal regulation may provide novel therapeutic strategies that would block metastatic progression, reducing dissemination of tumor cells and increasing patient survival.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Movement*
  • Chemokines / metabolism
  • Cytoskeleton / metabolism
  • Cytoskeleton / pathology*
  • Humans
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins / metabolism
  • Neoplasm Invasiveness / pathology*
  • Neoplasm Metastasis / pathology*
  • Neoplasm Metastasis / therapy


  • Chemokines
  • Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins