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BioMed Research International
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 546318, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/546318
Review Article

The Role of Epidermal Growth Factor Receptor in Cancer Metastasis and Microenvironment

1Department of Gastroenterological Surgery, Fukuoka University School of Medicine, Nanakuma 7-45-1, Jonan-ku, Fukuoka 814-0180, Japan
2Department of Molecular Pathology, Nara Medical University, 840 Shijo-cho, Kashihara, Nara 634-8521, Japan

Received 3 May 2013; Accepted 25 June 2013

Academic Editor: Davide Vigetti

Copyright © 2013 Takamitsu Sasaki et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Despite significant improvements in diagnosis, surgical techniques, and advancements in general patient care, the majority of deaths from cancer are caused by the metastases. There is an urgent need for an improved understanding of the cellular and molecular factors that promote cancer metastasis. The process of cancer metastasis depends on multiple interactions between cancer cells and host cells. Studies investigating the TGFα-EGFR signaling pathways that promote the growth and spread of cancer cells. Moreover, the signaling activates not only tumor cells, but also tumor-associated endothelial cells. TGFα-EGFR signaling in colon cancer cells creates a microenvironment that is conducive for metastasis, providing a rationale for efforts to inhibit EGFR signaling in TGFα-positive cancers. In this review, we describe the recent advances in our understanding of the molecular basis of cancer metastasis.