Int J Oral Biol.  2019 Jun;44(2):37-42. 10.11620/IJOB.2019.44.2.37.

Role of proteases, cytokines, and growth factors in bone invasion by oral squamous cell carcinoma

  • 1Oral Cancer Research Institute, Yonsei University College of Dentistry, Seoul 03722, Republic of Korea.
  • 2Department of Oral Biology and BK21 PLUS Project, Yonsei University College of Dentistry, Seoul 03722, Republic of Korea.
  • 3Department of Applied Life Science, The Graduate School, Yonsei University, Seoul 03722, Republic of Korea.


Oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) is the most common oral malignancy and an increasing global public health problem. OSCC frequently invades the jaw bone. OSCC-induced bone invasion has a significant impact on tumor stage, treatment selection, patient outcome, and quality of life. A number of studies have shown that osteoclast-mediated bone resorption is a major step in the progression of bone invasion by OSCC; however, the molecular mechanisms involved in OSCC bone invasion are not yet clear. In this review, we present the clinical types of OSCC bone invasion and summarize the role of key molecules, including proteases, cytokines, and growth factors, in the sequential process of bone invasion. A better understanding of bone invasion will facilitate the discovery of molecular targets for early detection and treatment of OSCC bone invasion.


Oral squamous cell carcinoma; Bone invasion; Growth factors; Cytokines; Proteases
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