Intermediate filaments (IF) are a family of proteins that are an important cytoskeletal component. Vimentin is a Type III intermediate filament that is primarily found in mesenchymal cells. Initially, it was assumed that the IFs served purely as a structural entity to give cells their shape and maintain their integrity. Over the past two decades, numerous roles and functions of the vimentin protein have been uncovered such as cellular migration, adhesion, and signaling. Historically, vimentin has been used as a tumor marker (Kidd et al. 2014). Moreover, recent research has uncovered that the IF protein is involved in numerous aspects of cancer development such as metastasis and the epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) (Mendez et al. 2010). Additionally, it has become clear in recent years that vimentin may also play a role in several other pathologies such as colitis (Mor-Vaknin et al. 2013), Crohn’s disease (Henderson et al. 2012), and...
- Cheng F, Shen Y, Mohanasundaram P, Lindstrom M, Ivaska J, Ny T, et al. Vimentin coordinates fibroblast proliferation and keratinocyte differentiation in wound healing via TGF-beta-slug signaling. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2016;113:E4320–7. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1519197113.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Chernyatina AA, Nicolet S, Aebi U, Herrmann H, Strelkov SV. Atomic structure of the vimentin central alpha-helical domain and its implications for intermediate filament assembly. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA. 2012;109:13620–5. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1206836109.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar