Vascular expression of matrix metalloproteinase-13 (collagenase-3) in basal cell carcinoma

Yukari Hattori, Kamalakar C. Nerusu, Narasimharao Bhagavathula, Meghan Brennan, Noboru Hattori, Hedwig S. Murphy, Lyndon D. Su, Timothy S. Wang, Timothy M. Johnson, James Varani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Matrix metalloproteinase-13 (MMP-13; collagenase-3) was detected in the vasculature from 17 of 20 human basal cell carcinomas as assessed by immunohistology immediately after surgery. In contrast, MMP-1 (interstitial collagenase) was detected in the vasculature of only two of the same specimens. MMP-13 reactivity was also observed in the capillaries of normal human skin taken from the wound margin. Human dermal microvascular endothelial cells as well as human umbilical vein endothelial cells were isolated in culture and examined for MMP-13 expression. By reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction and Southern blotting, an MMP-13 transcript was detected in unstimulated endothelial cells. The transcript was upregulated in cells treated with 50 nM phorbol myristate acetate (PMA). Western blotting demonstrated the presence of an anti-MMP-13 - immunoreactive protein in culture fluid from both cell sources. Immunoreactivity was stronger in culture fluid from cells treated with interleukin-1α (IL-1α) than in culture fluid from control cells. Tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and PMA also upregulated MMP-13 expression but these agents were not as effective as IL-1α. Additionally, reactivity was greater in culture fluid from endothelial cells grown on three-dimensional lattices of polymerized type I collagen than on dried collagen films. These data indicate that endothelial cells in the skin are a source of MMP-13 and that enzyme expression is upregulated under conditions that promote endothelial cell growth and vascular differentiation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)230-237
Number of pages8
JournalExperimental and Molecular Pathology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Basal cell carcinoma
  • Collagenase-3
  • Endothelial cells
  • Interleukin-1α
  • Interstitial collagenase
  • Tumor necrosis factor-α
  • Vasculature

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine
  • Molecular Biology
  • Clinical Biochemistry


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