Loss of maspin expression contributes to a more invasive potential in malignant melanoma

Pigment Cell Research
Alexandra E DenkAnja K Bosserhoff


Deregulation of protease expression and activity is known to play an important role in tumour progression of malignant melanoma. The serpin maspin, a tumour suppressor in breast and prostate cancer was described as an inhibitor of cell migration and inducer of cell adhesion between the basement membrane and extracellular matrix resulting in inhibition of tumour metastasis. In contrast, overexpression of maspin is correlated with poor prognosis in other cancers. However, little is known about expression, regulation and function of maspin in malignant melanoma. In this study, we found loss of maspin expression in malignant melanoma cells compared with normal human epidermal melanocytes, which was analysed by quantitative real-time PCR, Western blot analysis, immunohistochemistry and microarray. For functional studies, melanoma cell clones stably transfected with a maspin expression vector were tested for changes in proliferation, migration and invasion. Although we could not see differences in proliferation and migration, we detected strongly reduced invasive capacity in the melanoma cell clones in which maspin is re-expressed compared with control. Reduced invasive potential was also detected in three different melanoma cell lin...Continue Reading


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