Emerging roles of ADAM and ADAMTS metalloproteinases in cancer

Biochimie. 2008 Feb;90(2):369-79. doi: 10.1016/j.biochi.2007.08.008. Epub 2007 Sep 2.


A disintegrin and metalloproteinases (ADAMs) are a recently discovered family of proteins that share the metalloproteinase domain with matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs). Among this family, structural features distinguish the membrane-anchored ADAMs and the secreted ADAMs with thrombospondin motifs referred to as ADAMTSs. By acting on a large panel of membrane-associated and extracellular substrates, they control several cell functions such as adhesion, fusion, migration and proliferation. The current review addresses the contribution of these proteinases in the positive and negative regulation of cancer progression as mainly mediated by the regulation of growth factor activities and integrin functions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • ADAM Proteins / chemistry
  • ADAM Proteins / physiology*
  • Amino Acid Motifs
  • Disease Progression
  • Humans
  • Neoplasms / enzymology*
  • Neoplasms / etiology
  • Thrombospondins / chemistry


  • Thrombospondins
  • ADAM Proteins