Extracellular Matrix Constituents as Integrin Ligands

  • Klaus Kühn


Cells produce a large number of different extracellular matrix (ECM) components such as collagens, proteoglycans and glycoproteins, which form a large variety of distinct macromolecular organizations, whose bio-mechanical properties are always adapted to its special physiological function. Three typical examples are: (1) tendons, which transmit tensile forces and are built of parallel bundles of fibrils; (2) articular cartilage, adapted to withstand pressure and to absorb shocks by a network of thin fibrils whose cavities are filled with water-binding proteoglycans and hyaluronan; and (3) the sheet-like basement membranes, optimally suited as support for cells and as filter membrane. It is still not clear how the different components of the ECM interact and how the assembly into distinct macromolecular structures is controlled. It is, however, necessary that the gene expression of the ECM components is highly coordinated and that the cells synthesize and secrete the components in a distinct time course and at a correct molecular ratio.


Coiled Coil Globular Domain Heptad Repeat Integrin Ligand Cell BioI 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Klaus Kühn

There are no affiliations available

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