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Curr Opin Biotechnol. 2013 Oct;24(5):940-947. doi: 10.1016/j.copbio.2013.05.007. Epub 2013 Jul 12.

Engineering cell-cell signaling.

Author information

1
Department of Chemical Engineering, Northeastern University, Boston, MA.
#
Contributed equally

Abstract

Juxtacrine cell-cell signaling mediated by the direct interaction of adjoining mammalian cells is arguably the mode of cell communication that is most recalcitrant to engineering. Overcoming this challenge is crucial for progress in biomedical applications, such as tissue engineering, regenerative medicine, immune system engineering and therapeutic design. Here, we describe the significant advances that have been made in developing synthetic platforms (materials and devices) and synthetic cells (cell surface engineering and synthetic gene circuits) to modulate juxtacrine cell-cell signaling. In addition, significant progress has been made in elucidating design rules and strategies to modulate juxtacrine signaling on the basis of quantitative, engineering analysis of the mechanical and regulatory role of juxtacrine signals in the context of other cues and physical constraints in the microenvironment. These advances in engineering juxtacrine signaling lay a strong foundation for an integrative approach to utilize synthetic cells, advanced 'chassis' and predictive modeling to engineer the form and function of living tissues.

PMID:
23856592
PMCID:
PMC3962617
DOI:
10.1016/j.copbio.2013.05.007
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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