This chapter discusses how the drawbacks of a conventional genomics approach led to the misevaluation of matrix metalloproteinases (MMPs) as therapeutic targets. It summarizes recent advancements in our understanding of MMPs as master regulators of tissue homeostasis, and points to specific challenges of using MMPs as therapeutic targets. The chapter introduces the concepts of degradomics-based systems biology and demonstrates how its application to MMP research deepened our understanding of the interconnected activities of members of this protease class within the protease web. The chapter also reviews the results obtained from the genomics approach to MMP function in detail, pointing out valuable information as well as former missing links, those which eventually resulted in the misled predictions and expectations of the effects of therapeutic intervention with MMPs. Global assessment of MMP expression and, more importantly, activity will bring us closer to depicting complete MMP activity degradomes in complex systems.
- Conventional genomics approach
- Matrix metalloproteinases
- Therapeutic intervention