Author(s): Goldmann WH
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Abstract Physical forces play a critical role in cell integrity and development, but little is known how cells convert mechanical signals into biochemical responses. This mini-review examines potential molecular mediators like integrins, focal adhesion proteins, and the cytoskeleton in the context of a complex cell structure. These molecules-when activated by cell binding to the extracellular matrix-associate with the skeletal scaffold via the focal adhesion complex. Vinculin is presented as a mechanical coupling protein that contributes to the integrity of the cytoskeleton and cell shape control, and examples are given of how mechanical signals converge into biochemical responses through force-dependent changes in cell geometry and molecular mechanics. Copyright 2002 Elsevier Science Ltd. All rights reserved.
This article was published in Cell Biol Int
and referenced in Journal of Tissue Science & Engineering