Oncol Lett. 2016 Sep;12(3):2119-2126
Matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) exhibit an important function in extracellular matrix degradation. MMPs modulate the activation of growth factors, cytokines and metastasis. At present, the effect of exercise on serum levels of MMP-2 and -9 remains unclear. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of various physical activities on the circulating levels of MMP-2 and -9 in breast cancer (BC) survivors and healthy subjects. A total of 66 female subjects were enrolled in the present study. The cohort included 46 BC survivors and 20 healthy subjects divided into 5 groups: Group A (17 BC survivors, participating in recreational dragon boat paddling), group B (14 BC survivors, participating in recreational physical activity), group C (15 sedentary BC survivors), group D (10 healthy subjects, participating in recreational physical activity) and group E (10 sedentary healthy subjects). ELISA assays revealed a significant increase in the level of circulating MMP-2 in group B compared with all other groups. Recreational physical activity increased the levels of MMP-9 in healthy subjects (group D vs. E), however, the differences were not statistically significant, while in the BC survivor groups the results were opposite, with exercise reducing MMP-9 levels (group B vs. C). Furthermore, a significant increase in MMP-2 was observed in group B lymph node metastasis-positive (N+) subjects compared with group A and C N+ subjects. Thus, the results of the present study indicate that various physical activities modulate the levels of circulating MMP-2 and -9 in BC survivors, and the same exercise program induces a different effect when undertaken by healthy subjects and BC survivors. These results may have important implications with regard to the selection of appropriate physical activities for BC survivors, leading to improvements to their survival and prevention of recurrence, as well as amelioration of physical function, quality of life and fatigue.