Malignant pleural mesothelioma (MPM) has a poor prognosis and is a treatment resistant tumor, which is increasing in frequency throughout the world. The poor prognosis is due to the aggressive local invasiveness rather than distant metastasis. In this study, we established a cell line of malignant mesothelioma from a clinical specimen and assessed the relationship between the expression of MT1-MMP and the invasion ability of that line, as well as the cultured cells of several other lines, using the simple method that we created previously. We established a cell line from a clinical specimen from a patient with malignant mesothelioma. We assessed the invasive activities of MPM cells in an easy-to-prepare double-layered collagen gel hemisphere (DL-CGH) system that enabled us to visualize cell movements during invasion. To assess the role of MT1-MMP in the invasive activity of MPM cells, we knocked down its expression by RNA interference (RNAi). The invasion assay with DL-CGH revealed that a high expression of MT1-MMP in MPM cells was associated with aggressive invasive activity. The RNAi of MT1-MMP indicated that the expression of MT1-MMP might have a crucial role in the invasiveness of MPM cells. The MT1-MMP expression in MPM cells is related to their capacity for locally aggressive spreading into the pleura and the surrounding tissues, and MT1-MMP should be a suitable molecular target for the suppression of the invasiveness of MPM.
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