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Matrix Biol. 2005 Sep;24(6):389-99.

Fibronectin fibrillogenesis, a cell-mediated matrix assembly process.

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Department of Molecular Biology, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ 08544-1014, United States.


The extracellular matrix provides a framework for cell adhesion, supports cell movement, and serves to compartmentalize tissues into functional units. Fibronectin is a core component of many extracellular matrices where it regulates a variety of cell activities through direct interactions with cell surface integrin receptors. Fibronectin is synthesized by many adherent cells which then assemble it into a fibrillar network. The assembly process is integrin-dependent and fibronectin-integrin interactions initiate a step-wise process involving conformational activation of fibronectin outside and organization of the actin cytoskeleton inside. During assembly, fibronectin undergoes conformational changes that expose fibronectin-binding sites and promote intermolecular interactions needed for fibril formation. In this review, the main steps of fibronectin assembly are described and recent studies on fibronectin conformational changes are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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