Characterization of Tenascin Secreted by Human Melanoma Cells

Meenhard Herlyn, Ullrich Graeven, David Speicher, Ben Ami Sela, Roland Kath

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64 Scopus citations


Tenascin is a large glycoprotein of the extracellular matrix. It shows a site-restricted expression during embryogenesis and can be found in adult tissues during wound healing and tumorigenesis. Because of the potential involvement of tenascin in adhesion and invasion during metas tasis, the study of the interactions of tumor cells with tenascin is of considerable interest. Using five anti-melanoma monoclonal antibodies to four different epitopes of human tenascin, we found that most mela noma cells secrete tenascin in vitro constitutively. Transforming growth factor fi, in the medium increased secretion in tenascin-producing cells. Tenascin was present in sera of melanoma patients, with significantly elevated levels in patients with advanced melanomas as compared to patients with low tumor burden or to normal donors. Normal and malig nant melanocytes did not attach to tenascin as substrate within 1 to 2 h and tenascin could also inhibit fibronectin-dependent adhesion. These results indicate that tenascin may play a critical role in cell-substrate interactions of melanoma cells.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4853-4858
Number of pages6
JournalCancer Research
Issue number18
StatePublished - Sep 1991
Externally publishedYes


FundersFunder number
National Cancer InstituteR01CA044877


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