Invasive activity and chemotactic response to growth factors by Kaposi's sarcoma cells

Adrians Albini, Charles D. Mitchell, Erik W. Thompson, Ruth Seeman, George R. Martin, Alec E. Wittek, Gerald V. Quinnan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


Kaposi's sarcoma (KS) is a relatively low grade neoplasm, classically occurring in the skin of elderly men. A more virulent and invasive form of Kaposi's sarcoma has been described in patients with acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS). The origin and identification of the tumor cells in these lesions is controversial. Here we have studied the behavior of cells derived from KS lesions in an in vitro assay which measures the ability of cells to invade through a reconstituted basement membrane. In agreement with previous work, KS cells obtained under selective culture conditions were invasive showing activity comparable to that of malignant tumor cells. Normal fibroblasts, smooth muscle cells, and endothelial cells did not demonstrate invasive behavior under the same experimental conditions. To characterize further the nature of the KS cells we tested the chemotactic response of cells from the most invasive line to a variety of growth factors and compared their response to those of fibroblasts, smooth muscle, and endothelial cells. These studies suggest that normal cells respond to a unique repertoire of chemotactic factors. The chemotactic response of the KS cells most closely resembled that of smooth muscle cells and was quite distinct from endothelial cells. These results indicate that the KS‐derived cultures contain invasive cells with a smooth muscle cell‐like phenotype.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)369-376
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of cellular biochemistry
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 1988
Externally publishedYes


  • Kaposi's sarcoma
  • chemotaxis
  • growth factors
  • invasion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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