[en] Implantation and placental development are dependent upon trophoblast invasion of the endometrium. While the villous trophoblast does not display invasive behavior, the extravillous cytotrophoblast is highly invasive. By cloning BeWo choriocarcinoma cells, we have isolated two distinct clones that share similarities with villous and extravillous cytotrophoblasts. When cultured at the surface of a type I collagen gel, BeWo MC-1 cells were not invasive, whereas BeWo MC-2 cells rapidly invaded this matrix. When injected subcutaneously in nude mice, BeWo MC-1 cells developed a localized tumor and BeWo MC-2 cells developed larger tumors with micrometastases. Gelatinase A expression and minute amounts of gelatinase B were detected in the parental cell line and in both clones. However, the parental and the BeWo MC-2 cells secreted 5- to 10-fold more gelatinase A than the BeWo MC-1 cells. Laminin and matrigel stimulated the production of gelatinase A in BeWo MC-2 cells. Type I collagen promoted the conversion of the 72-kDa progelatinase A in an active enzyme only in parental BeWo and in BeWo MC-2 cells. These clones provide an interesting model for studying the complex mechanisms regulating implantation as well as the controlled invasiveness during implantation compared to tumor invasion.