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Am J Pathol. 1996 Nov;149(5):1651-60.

Expression of the beta 7 integrin by human endothelial cells.

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Department of Internal Medicine, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas 75235-8577, USA.


Integrin adhesion receptors mediate fundamental intercellular interactions of many cell types as well as cellular interactions with specific extracellular matrix molecules. To date, the beta 7 integrin has been shown to be expressed by leukocyte subsets and to mediate interactions of these cells with extracellular matrix molecules as well as with endothelial and epithelial cells. The data presented here indicate that human endothelial cells also express the beta 7 integrin both in vitro and in situ. Analysis of cDNA indicated that endothelial beta 7 was identical to that expressed by leukocytes. Cell surface expression of beta 7 was increased by exposure of the endothelium to the pro-inflammatory cytokines, tumor necrosis factor-alpha and interleukin-1 beta. In leukocytes, beta 7 complexes with alpha 4 or alpha E integrin chains. Endothelial cells also expressed a number of alpha-integrin chains, including alpha 4, but not alpha E. The expression and utilization of beta 7, presumably complexed with alpha 4, by endothelial cells may be instrumental in the maintenance of the function or phenotype of endothelial cells.

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