The lysyl oxidase (LOX) family of oxidases contains a group of extracellular copper-dependent enzymes that catalyze the cross-linking of collagen and elastin by oxidation, thus maintaining the rigidity and structural stability of the extracellular matrix (ECM). Aberrant expression or activation of LOX alters the cellular microenvironment, leading to many diseases, including atherosclerosis, tissue fibrosis, and cancer. Recently, a number of studies have shown that LOX is overexpressed in most cancers and that it is involved in the regulation of tumor progression and metastasis. In contrast, a few reports have also indicated the tumor-suppressing role of LOX. In this short review, we discuss recent research on the correlations between LOX and cancer. Further, the role of LOX in tumor microenvironment remodeling, tumorigenesis, and metastasis and the underlying mechanisms have also been elucidated.
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