1st Edition

Integrins and Development

By Erik H.J. Danen Copyright 2006
    234 Pages 43 B/W Illustrations
    by CRC Press

    Cell adhesion is essential for the organization of multicellular organisms. Indeed, various types of cell adhesion receptors, including cadherins and integrins, are present in animals ranging from nematodes and insects to vertebrates. In this book, we focus on the integrin family, which is shared among all metazoans, but has expanded considerably with vertebrate evolution. Since the cloning of the first integrin subunit, some twenty years ago, integrin biology has been—and still is—a topic of intense study. Integrin-mediated adhesion is a regulated process that, in turn, regulates the organization of the actin cytoskeleton. Moreover, it has become clear from in vitro analyses that integrin-mediated adhesion can affect virtually all aspects of cellular behavior—including polarity, motility, proliferation, survival, and differentiation. This book aims to provide an extensive overview of the current knowledge about the regulation of developmental processes as well as the maintenance of proper tissue function, by integrin-mediated adhesion. In addition, key aspects of integrin cell biology are discussed. Chapter 1 of this book is meant as an introduction in integrin biology and is followed by a more in-depth discussion of the roles that integrins play in extracellular matrix assembly, in cell migration, and in the regulation of intracellular signaling cascades (Chapters 2-4). Subsequently, Chapters 5 and 6 discuss what has been learned about the role of integrins and associated proteins in animal development from genetic analysis of two invertebrates— the flatworm, C. elegans and the fruit fly, D. melanogaster. The relatively limited number of genes encoding adhesion-related proteins and the relative ease and speed with which genetic experiments can be performed in these animals, have allowed researchers to study the basic principles of integrin biology in vivo. Finally, Chapters 7-14 discuss how integrin-mediated adhesion regulates the development and functionality of the different mammalian organ systems, based to a large extent on (conditional) gene knockout studies in mice and on studies in human patients.

    1. Integrins: An Overview of Structural and Functional Aspects 2. Integrins in Extracellular Matrix Assembly 3. The Role of Integrins in Cell Migration 4. The Essence of Integrin Signal Transduction: Assembly of Dynamc Scaffolds and Cross-Talk with Other Receptors 5. C. elegan Integrins 6. Integrine and Associated Proteins in Drosophila Development7. Integrins in the Skin 8. Integrins in Skeletal Cell Function and Development 9. Insights into Integrin Function in Skeletal Muscle 10. The Role of Integrins in Vasculogenesis and Angiogenesis 11. Integrins in Urogenital Development 12. Integrin Regulation of Mammary Gland Development 13. Cell Adhesion in Nervous System Development: Integrin Functions in Glial Cells 14. Roles for Integrins and Associated Proteins in the Haematopoietic System.


    Danen, Erik H.J.