KISS1 (GenBank Accession No. U43527) is a human metastasis-suppressor gene that was discovered in human melanoma cells. The name is derived from SS for putative Suppressor Sequence; the Ki was added to remind people of its discovery in Hershey, Pennsylvania. Upon introduction into metastatic cells, which normally do not express the gene, the cells retain the ability to form tumors while losing their ability to metastasize.
Although this entry focuses on the roles of KISS1 in cancer metastasis (as KISS1 was originally discovered) the physiologic role of KISS1 is as a neurotransmitter which binds to a G-protein coupled receptor (KISS1R) to regulate the hypothalamic-pituitary-gonadal axis. Readers are encouraged to read any of several excellent reviews on the topic of its endocrine functions.
As melanomas progress toward increasing malignancy, nonrandom chromosomal and metabolic changes occur to facilitate a metastasis. Deletion of chromosome 6 tends to occur at...