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Activated leukocyte cell adhesion molecule (ALCAM) is expressed on various cell types, including leukocytes, endothelial cells, and certain tumor cells. Although ALCAM expression on tumor cells has been linked to tumor invasion and metastatic spread, the contribution of ALCAM expressed in cells forming the tumor stroma to cancer progression has not been investigated. In this study, ALCAM-deficient (ALCAM-/-) mice were used to evaluate the role of ALCAM in lung tumor growth and metastasis. ALCAM-/- mice displayed an altered blood vascular network in the lung and the diaphragm, indicative of an angiogenetic defect. The absence of ALCAM expression in cells forming the stromal tumor microenvironment profoundly affected lung tumor growth in three different i.v. metastasis models. In the case of Lewis lung carcinoma (LLC), an additional defect in tumor cell homing to the lungs and a resulting reduction in the number of lung tumor nodules were observed. Similarly, when LLC cells were implanted subcutaneously for the study of spontaneous tumor cell metastasis, the rate of LLC metastasis to the lungs was profoundly reduced in ALCAM-/- mice. Taken together, our work demonstrates for the first time the in vivo contribution of ALCAM to angiogenesis and reveals a novel role of stromally expressed ALCAM in supporting tumor growth and metastatic spread. Copyright © 2017 American Society for Investigative Pathology. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


Ann-Helen Willrodt, Michal Beffinger, Martina Vranova, Darya Protsyuk, Katja Schuler, Maria Jadhav, Mathias Heikenwalder, Maries van den Broek, Lubor Borsig, Cornelia Halin. Stromal Expression of Activated Leukocyte Cell Adhesion Molecule Promotes Lung Tumor Growth and Metastasis. The American journal of pathology. 2017 Nov;187(11):2558-2569

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PMID: 28822802

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