The matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) are zinc-dependent endopeptidases belonging to the metzincin superfamily. There are at least 23 members of MMPs ever reported in human, and they and their substrates are widely expressed in many tissues. Recent growing evidence has established that MMP not only can degrade a variety of components of extracellular matrix, but also can cleave and activate various non-matrix proteins, including cytokines, chemokines and growth factors, contributing to both physiological and pathological processes. In normal conditions, MMP expression and activity are tightly regulated via interactions between their activators and inhibitors. Imbalance among these factors, however, results in dysregulated MMP activity, which causes tissue destruction and functional alteration or local inflammation, leading to the development of diverse diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, arthritis, neurodegenerative disease, as well as cancer. This article focuses on the accumulated evidence supporting a wide range of roles of MMPs in various non-neoplastic diseases and provides an outlook on the therapeutic potential of inhibiting MMP action.
Tokito, A., & Jougasaki, M. (2016, July 21). Matrix metalloproteinases in non-neoplastic disorders. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. MDPI AG. https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms17071178