• Authors: Markovic, D. S., Vinnakota, K., Chirasani, S., Synowitz, M., Raguet, H., Stock, K., Sliwa, M., Lehmann, S., Kalin, R., van Rooijen, N., Holmbeck, K., Heppner, F. L., Kiwit, J., Matyash, V., Lehnardt, S., Kaminska, B., Glass, R., Kettenmann, H.
  • Year: 2009
  • Journal: Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 106 12530-5
  • Applications: in vitro / DNA / jetPEI-Macrophage
  • Cell type: Mouse primary microglial cells


Diffuse infiltration of glioma cells into normal brain tissue is considered to be a main reason for the unfavorable outcomes of patients with malignant gliomas. Invasion of glioma cells into the brain parenchyma is facilitated by metalloprotease-mediated degradation of the extracellular matrix. Metalloproteases are released as inactive pro-forms and get activated upon cleavage by membrane bound metalloproteases. Here, we show that membrane type 1 metalloprotease (MT1-MMP) is up-regulated in glioma-associated microglia, but not in the glioma cells. Overexpression of MT1-MMP is even lethal for glioma cells. Glioma-released factors trigger the expression and activity of MT1-MMP via microglial toll-like receptors and the p38 MAPK pathway, as deletion of the toll-like receptor adapter protein MyD88 or p38 inhibition prevented MT1-MMP expression and activity in cultured microglial cells. Microglial MT1-MMP in turn activates glioma-derived pro-MMP-2 and promotes glioma expansion, as shown in an ex vivo model using MT1-MMP-deficient brain tissue and a microglia depletion paradigm. Finally, MyD88 deficiency or microglia depletion largely attenuated glioma expansion in 2 independent in vivo models.