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Curr Opin Cell Biol. 2000 Oct;12(5):621-8.

Urokinase receptor: a molecular organizer in cellular communication.

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Institut für Biochemie, Fachbereich Humanmedizin, Justus-Liebig-Universität, Friedrichstrasse 24, D-35392, Giessen, Germany.


In a variety of cell types, the glycolipid-anchored urokinase receptor (uPAR) is colocalized pericellularly with components of the plasminogen activation system and endocytosis receptors. uPAR is also coexpressed with caveolin and members of the integrin adhesion receptor superfamily. The formation of functional units with these various proteins allows the uPAR to mediate the focused proteolysis required for cell migration and invasion and to contribute both directly and indirectly to cell adhesive processes in a non-proteolytic fashion. This dual activity, together with the initiation of signal transduction pathways by uPAR, is believed to influence cellular behaviour in angiogenesis, inflammation, wound repair and tumor progression/metastasis and open up the way for uPAR-based therapeutic approaches.

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