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Focal adhesions (FAs) regulate cell migration. Vinculin, with its many potential binding partners, can interconnect signals in FAs. Despite the well-characterized structure of vinculin, the molecular mechanisms underlying its action have remained unclear. Here, using vinculin mutants, we separate the vinculin head and tail regions into distinct functional(More)
Cellular locomotion is driven by repeated cycles of protrusion of the leading edge, formation of new matrix adhesions and retraction of the trailing edge. In this study we addressed the molecular composition and dynamics of focal complexes, formed under the leading lamellae of motile cells, and their maturation into focal adhesions. We combined(More)
Alpha4 integrins are used by leukocytes and neural crest derivatives for adhesion and migration during embryogenesis, immune responses and tumour invasion. The pro-migratory activity of alpha4 integrin is mediated in part through the direct binding of the cytoplasmic domain to paxillin. Here, using intermolecular FRET and biochemical analyses, we report a(More)
The actin cytoskeleton maintains the cellular architecture and mediates cell movements. To explore actin cytoskeletal dynamics, the enhanced green fluorescent protein (EGFP) was fused to human &bgr ;-actin. The fusion protein was incorporated into actin fibers which became depolymerized upon cytochalasin B treatment. This functional EGFP-actin construct(More)
Cell migration is of paramount importance to organism development and maintenance as well as multiple pathological processes, including cancer metastasis. The RhoGTPases Rac1 and RhoA are indispensable for cell migration as they regulate cell protrusion, cell-extracellular matrix (ECM) interactions and force transduction. However, the consequences of their(More)
Cell-cell contacts are essential for morphogenesis and tissue function and play a vital role in mediating endothelial cohesion within the vascular system during vessel growth and organization. We identified a novel junctional adhesion molecule, named JAM-2, by a selective RNA display method, which allowed identification of transcripts encoding(More)
Migrating cells are polarized with a protrusive lamella at the cell front followed by the main cell body and a retractable tail at the rear of the cell. The lamella terminates in ruffling lamellipodia that face the direction of migration. Although the role of actin in the formation of lamellipodia is well established, it remains unclear to what degree(More)
Integrins are cell adhesion receptors that sense the extracellular matrix (ECM) environment. One of their functions is to regulate cell fate decisions, although the question of how integrins initiate intracellular signaling is not fully resolved. In this paper, we examine the role of talin, an adapter protein at cell-matrix attachment sites, in outside-in(More)
Cell migration in wound healing and disease is critically dependent on integration with the extracellular matrix, but the receptors that couple matrix topography to migratory behavior remain obscure. Using nano-engineered fibronectin surfaces and cell-derived matrices, we identify syndecan-4 as a key signaling receptor determining directional migration. In(More)
The microtubule (MT) and actin cytoskeletons are fundamental to cell integrity, because they control a host of cellular activities, including cell division, growth, polarization, and migration. Proteins involved in mediating the cross-talk between MT and actin cytoskeletons are key to many cellular processes and play important physiological roles. We(More)