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World J Clin Oncol. Nov 10, 2010; 1(1): 35-40
Published online Nov 10, 2010. doi: 10.5306/wjco.v1.i1.35
Procathepsin D and cancer: From molecular biology to clinical applications
Vaclav Vetvicka, Aruna Vashishta, Sujata Saraswat-Ohri, Jana Vetvickova
Vaclav Vetvicka, Jana Vetvickova, Department of Pathology, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
Aruna Vashishta, Sujata Saraswat-Ohri, Kentucky Spinal Cord Injury Centre, Department of Neurological Surgery, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY 40202, United States
Author contributions: All authors contributed equally to this work.
Correspondence to: Vaclav Vetvicka, PhD, Professor, Department of Pathology, University of Louisville, 511 S. Floyd, Louisville, KY 40202, United States.
Telephone: +1-502-8521612 Fax: +1-502-8521177
Received: June 11, 2010
Revised: August 24, 2010
Accepted: September 1, 2010
Published online: November 10, 2010

Procathepsin D (pCD) is overexpressed and secreted by cells of various tumor types including breast and lung carcinomas. pCD affects multiple features of tumor cells including proliferation, invasion, metastases and apoptosis. Several laboratories have previously shown that the mitogenic effect of pCD on cancer cells is mediated via its propeptide part (APpCD). However, the exact mechanism of how pCD affects cancer cells has not been identified. Recent observations have also revealed the possible use of pCD/APpcD as a marker of cancer progression. The purpose of this review is to summarize the three major potentials of pCD-tumor marker, potential drug, and screening agent.

Keywords: Procathepsin D, Cancer, Screening, Enzyme, Cancer cells, Stimulation