SPARC (Osteonectin) is secreted by osteoblasts during bone formation. It is a 40kD acidic and cysteine-rich glycoprotein consisting of a single polypeptide chain. It is a glycoprotein in the bone that binds calcium and also involved in extracellular matrix synthesis and promotion of changes to cell shape. An interrelationship between osteonectin over-expression and ampullary cancers and chronic pancreatitis has been found. The gene product has been correlated with tumor suppression but has also been associated with metastasis based on cell shape changes which can promote tumor cell invasion. Three transcript variants encoding different isoforms have been known for this gene.
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