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Trends Cell Biol. 1995 Jan;5(1):1-4.

From laminin to lamin: regulation of tissue-specific gene expression by the ECM.

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Life Sciences Division, Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory, Berkeley, CA 94720, USA.


Mammary epithelial cells need a laminin-rich extracellular matrix (ECM) to achieve a functionally differentiated phenotype that includes secretion of milk-specific proteins such as beta-casein. There is good evidence that ECM-induced expression of beta-casein involves an 'ECM-response element' in the promoter of the casein gene that is activated by integrin-mediated signalling. This article proposes that ECM-induced structural changes in the cytoskeleton, histone organization and the nuclear matrix contribute to this tissue-specific gene expression.


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