Activated platelets may contribute to the metastatic behavior of tumor cells when the cancer cells and platelets interact. The interaction requires cell and platelet surface integrin. Thyroid hormone as L-thyroxine (T4) is the principal ligand for a hormone receptor on integrin αvβ3 on tumor cells and platelets. T4 activates the integrin, promoting platelet aggregation and degranulation (local ATP release) and stimulating tumor cell proliferation. By a variety of molecular mechanisms reviewed here, extracellular ATP promotes tumor cell invasiveness and metastasis and supports a role for T4 as a pro-metastatic factor.
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