The Occurrence of MET Ectodomain Shedding in Oral Cancer and Its Potential Impact on the Use of Targeted Therapies

Maria J De Herdt, Berdine van der Steen, Robert J Baatenburg de Jong, Leendert H J Looijenga, Senada Koljenović, Jose A Hardillo

Onderzoeksoutput: Bijdrage aan tijdschriftArtikelpeer review

1 Citaat (Scopus)


The receptor tyrosine kinase MET has gained attention as a therapeutic target. Although MET immunoreactivity is associated with progressive disease, use of targeted therapies has not yet led to major survival benefits. A possible explanation is the lack of companion diagnostics (CDx) that account for proteolytic processing. During presenilin-regulated intramembrane proteolysis, MET's ectodomain is shed into the extracellular space, which is followed by γ-secretase-mediated cleavage of the residual membranous C-terminal fragment. The resulting intracellular fragment is degraded by the proteasome, leading to downregulation of MET signaling. Conversely, a membrane-bound MET fragment lacking the ectodomain (MET-EC-) can confer malignant potential. Use of C- and N-terminal MET monoclonal antibodies (moAbs) has illustrated that MET-EC- occurs in transmembranous C-terminal MET-positive oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC). Here, we propose that ectodomain shedding, resulting from G-protein-coupled receptor transactivation of epidermal growth factor receptor signaling, and/or overexpression of ADAM10/17 and/or MET, stabilizes and possibly activates MET-EC- in OSCC. As MET-EC- is associated with poor prognosis in OSCC, it potentially has impact on the use of targeted therapies. Therefore, MET-EC- should be incorporated in the design of CDx to improve patient stratification and ultimately prolong survival. Hence, MET-EC- requires further investigation seen its oncogenic and predictive properties.

Originele taal-2Engels
Nummer van het tijdschrift6
StatusGepubliceerd - 1 mrt. 2022


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