Extracellular matrix metalloproteinase inducer EMMPRIN also known as basigin or CD147 is a cell surface glycoprotein that belongs to the Ig superfamily. It is involved in numerous physiological and pathological processes and displays several molecular and cellular characteristics. The major function of EMMPRIN is to stimulate the synthesis of several matrix metalloproteinases that play an important role in the maintenance of the extracellular matrix. The role of the tumour microenvironment in oral carcinogenesis is taking centre stage. There is evidence that EMMPRIN is central in the promotion of tumour invasion, growth/progression, and metastasis of various cancers, and the mechanism by which it exerts its effect in Oral Squamous Cell Carcinoma (OSCC) tumorigenesis have not been completely understood. This article aims to comprehensively review the structure, biological function of EMMPRIN, and its role in oral tumorigenesis and possible therapeutic target.
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