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Besides adhesion: new perspectives of integrin functions in angiogenesis

Guido Serini, Lucia Napione, Marco Arese, Federico Bussolino
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/cvr/cvn045 213-222 First published online: 19 February 2008


During angiogenic remodelling in embryo and adult life, endothelial cells lining blood vessel walls dynamically modify their integrin-mediated adhesive contacts with the surrounding extracellular matrix. However, besides regulating cell adhesion and migration, integrins dynamically participate in a network with soluble molecules and their receptors. Angiogenesis is characterized by opposing autocrine and paracrine loops of growth factors and semaphorins that regulate the activation of integrins on the endothelial surface through tyrosine kinase receptors (TKR) and the neuropilin/plexin system. Moreover, pro- and anti-angiogenic factors can directly bind integrins and regulate endothelial cell behaviour. This review summarizes the recent progress in understanding the reciprocal interactions between integrins, TKR, and semaphorin receptors.

  • Plexin
  • Semaphorin
  • Tyrosine kinase receptors
  • Endothelial cells
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