As it was first characterized in 1997, the ADAMTS (A Disintegrin and Metalloprotease with ThromboSpondin motifs) metalloprotease family has been associated with many physiological and pathological conditions. Of the 19 proteases belonging to this family, considerable attention has been devoted to the role of its first member ADAMTS1 in cancer. Elevated ADAMTS1 promotes pro-tumorigenic changes such as increased tumor cell proliferation, inhibited apoptosis and altered vascularization. Importantly, it facilitates significant peritumoral remodeling of the extracellular matrix environment to promote tumor progression and metastasis. However, discrepancy exists, as several studies also depict ADAMTS1 as a tumor suppressor. This article reviews the current understanding of ADAMTS1 regulation and the consequence of its dysregulation in primary cancer and ADAMTS1-mediated pathways of cancer progression and metastasis.
Keywords: ADAMTS1; cancer; metalloproteinase; metastasis; pathways.
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