RHAMM (Receptor for HA Mediated Motility) is a novel HA receptor that has been linked to regulating cell locomotion and density dependant contact inhibition of fibroblasts, smooth muscle cells, macrophages, lymphocytes, astrocytes and sperm. The ubiquitous expression of RHAMM suggests the existence of multiple isoforms, and indeed, RHAMM is found in various cellular compartments, namely nuclear, cytosolic, membrane-bound and extracellular. In this review, we emphasize the evolving role of RHAMM in B cell malignancies, and examine the function of RHAMM in T cell development in the thymic microenvironment. Both the motile behaviour of progenitor thymocytes (CD3-CD4-CD8-) and malignant B cells from multiple myeloma (MM), plasma cell leukemia, and hairy cell leukemia was blocked by monoclonal antibodies to RHAMM, suggesting that motility may correlate with increased expression of RHAMM at the cell surface. Interestingly, the soluble form of RHAMM is able to inhibit fibroblast locomotion, and it is likely that a balance between expression of both forms determines, in part the motility of cells. RHAMM appears to play a fundamental role in the immune system and the ability of RHAMM to function as a motility receptor is likely to be due to complex variables including the extent to which soluble RHAMM is secreted. RHAMM expression characterizes circulating monoclonal B cells as abnormal, potentially invasive and/or metastatic components of myeloma and may underlie the malignant behavior of these cells.
- Multiple myeloma hyaluronan
- P-glycoprotein 170
- Receptor for hyaluronan mediated motility
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cancer Research