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Biological Chemistry

Editor-in-Chief: Brüne, Bernhard

Editorial Board Member: Buchner, Johannes / Lei, Ming / Ludwig, Stephan / Sies, Helmut / Turk, Boris / Wittinghofer, Alfred

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Cysteine cathepsin non-inhibitory binding partners: modulating intracellular trafficking and function

Bernadette C. Victor1 / Bonnie F. Sloane2

1Department of Pharmacology and Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201, USA

2Department of Pharmacology and Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, Wayne State University School of Medicine, Detroit, MI 48201, USA

Corresponding author

Citation Information: Biological Chemistry. Volume 388, Issue 11, Pages 1131–1140, ISSN (Online) 14374315, ISSN (Print) 14316730, DOI: 10.1515/BC.2007.150, November 2007

Publication History

Published Online:


Cysteine cathepsins play a fundamental role in tumor growth, invasion and migration, angiogenesis, and the metastatic cascade. Evidence of their overexpression in a wide array of human tumors has been well documented. Cysteine cathepsins seem to have a characteristic location-function relationship that leads to non-traditional roles such as those in development and pathology. For example, during tumor development, some cysteine cathepsins are found not just within lysosomes, but are also redistributed into presumptive exocytic vesicles at the cell periphery, resulting in their secretion. This altered localization contributes to non-lysosomal functions that have been linked to malignant progression. Mechanisms for altered localization are not well understood, but do include the interaction of cysteine cathepsins with binding partners that modulate intracellular trafficking and association with specific regions on the cell surface.

Keywords: cancer; cathepsin B; cysteine cathepsin; glycosaminoglycan

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