2Vavilov Institute of General Genetics, Russian Academy of Sciences, 117971 Moscow, Russia; E-mail: email@example.com
3Blokhin Cancer Research Center, 115478 Moscow, Russia; E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
* To whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received September 30, 2016; Revision received November 14, 2016
Metastasis of primary tumors progresses stepwise – from change in biochemistry, morphology, and migratory patterns of tumor cells to the emergence of receptors on their surface that facilitate directional migration to target organs followed by the formation of a specific microenvironment in a target organ that helps attachment and survival of metastatic cells. A set of specific genes and signaling pathways mediate this process under control of microRNA. The molecular mechanisms underlying biological processes associated with tumor metastasis are reviewed in this publication using ovarian cancer, which exhibits high metastatic potential, as an example. Information and data on the genes and regulatory microRNAs involved in the formation of cancer stem cells, epithelial–mesenchymal transition, reducing focal adhesion, degradation of extracellular matrix, increasing migration activity of cancer cells, formation of spheroids, apoptosis, autophagy, angiogenesis, formation of metastases, and development of ascites are presented. Clusters of microRNAs (miR-145, miR-31, miR-506, miR-101) most essential for metastasis of ovarian cancer including the families of microRNAs (miR-200, miR-214, miR-25) with dual role, which is different in different histological types of ovarian cancer, are discussed in detail in a section of the review.
KEY WORDS: regulatory miRNAs, key genes, ovarian cancer, metastasis