Recent studies have highlighted key roles played by non-neoplastic host cells of the tumor microenvironment, and by secreted factors from tumor and host cells, in promoting malignancy. In this regard, damage-associated molecular pattern (DAMP) molecules such as S100A8 and S100A9, with well-known functions in inflammation, have been increasingly recognized not only as markers, but also as new candidates with important roles in modulating tumor growth and metastasis. This review focuses on our current understanding of the pro- and anti-tumorigenic functions of S100A8 and S100A9. Elucidating molecular pathways mediated by these proteins promises to provide potential novel targets for the development of cancer therapeutics and to establish valid biomarkers to identify early stages of tumor progression.
Copyright © 2011 S. Karger AG, Basel.