• K-FGF;
  • bFGF;
  • protease expression;
  • malignant progression

Matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) expression was investigated in NIH-3T3 fibroblasts that secrete K-FGF and in NIH-3T3 cells which express chimeric bFGF with a signal sequence targeting bFGF to the secretory pathway. Correlations between altered MMPs' and other proteases' expression and malignant potential were determined. Correlations between the expression of MMPs and the invasion ability of K-FGF and bFGF over-expressing cells were also determined. The resulting correlation between alterations in proteases and malignant progression supports a model which suggests that growth factor modulation of protease expression is part of the altered growth regulatory program associated with cellular transformation and malignant progression.