We have used adenovirus-mediated gene delivery of tissue inhibitor of metalloproteinase (TIMP)-1, -2, and -3 to examine their effect on the invasion capacity of metastatic melanoma cell lines SK-Mel-5 and A2058. Infection of melanoma cells with recombinant replication-deficient adenoviruses coding for TIMP-1, TIMP-2, and TIMP-3 resulted in marked secretion of TIMP-1 and TIMP-2 to culture medium and accumulation of TIMP-3 to matrix. Overexpression of TIMP-3 inhibited invasion of SK-Mel-5 and A2058 cells through reconstituted basement membrane (Matrigel) even more potently than TIMP-1 and TIMP-2. In addition, overproduction of TIMP-3 reduced attachment of melanoma cells to type I and IV collagen and fibronectin and resulted in apoptosis in both SK-Mel-5 and A2058 cells. These results propose a novel role for TIMP-3 in regulation of invasion and survival of malignant cells and suggest potential use for TIMP-3 in adenovirus-mediated gene therapy of malignant melanoma.


Supported by grants from the Academy of Finland, Sigrid Jusélius Foundation, the Cancer Foundation of Finland, Turku University Central Hospital, and Medical Research Council of Great Britain. M. A. is a student in Turku Graduate School in Biomedical Sciences.

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