UroToday- Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are important zinc dependent proteolytic enzymes that are overexpressed in malignancy, and have been shown to be associated with both tumor cell invasion and neoangiogenesis. MMP's are secreted by both tumor and endothelial cells and function to degrade the extracellular matrix. MMP 2 and 9 are probably the most investigated of the MMP's but MMP 1, 3, 11, 12, and 14 overexpression have been idenitified in the molecular biology of renal cell carcinoma (RCC). Here, Miyata and colleagues examine the expression of MMP 7 (matrilysin) in RCC, correlating expression by both tumor cells, and endothelial cells providing vasculature to the tumor, with patient outcome.

The authors examined MMP 7 expression using immunohistochemistry in both tumor cells as well as CD34 positive blood vessels within the tumor in 156 patients who underwent surgery for RCC. Mean follow-up was 42.6 months. Of note, MMP 7 expression was noted to be weak to moderate in normal renal epithelium. The authors noted significantly increased expression of MMP 7 in tumor cells relative to normal (p

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