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PLoS One. 2018 Oct 22;13(10):e0205306. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0205306. eCollection 2018.

Cells respond to deletion of CAV1 by increasing synthesis of extracellular matrix.

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Medical Research Council Laboratory of Molecular Biology, Cambridge, United Kingdom.
Institute of Pathophysiological Anesthesiology and Process Engineering, University of Ulm, Ulm, Germany.
Institute of General Physiology, University of Ulm, Ulm, Germany.


A range of cellular functions have been attributed to caveolae, flask-like invaginations of the plasma membrane. Here, we have used RNA-seq to achieve quantitative transcriptional profiling of primary embryonic fibroblasts from caveolin 1 knockout mice (CAV1-/- MEFs), and thereby to gain hypothesis-free insight into how these cells respond to the absence of caveolae. Components of the extracellular matrix were decisively over-represented within the set of genes displaying altered expression in CAV1-/- MEFs when compared to congenic wild-type controls. This was confirmed biochemically and by imaging for selected examples. Up-regulation of components of the extracellular matrix was also observed in a second cell line, NIH-3T3 cells genome edited to delete CAV1. Up-regulation of components of the extracellular matrix was detected in vivo by assessing collagen deposition and compliance of CAV1-/- lungs. We discuss the implications of these findings in terms of the cellular function of caveolae.

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Conflict of interest statement

The authors have declared that no competing interests exist.

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