One More Notch Towards the Connection of ECM and Cell Communication

Document Type

Student Presentation

Presentation Date


Faculty Sponsor

Allan Albig


Cellular membrane molecules have numerous functions on the cell such as controlling migration, adhesion, or cell to cell communication. Integrins are a transmembrane, cell receptor protein that dimerize to facilitate cell-extracellular matrix adhesion. The cell receptor Notch works to allow cell to cell communication through ligand binding. There is some evidence to support a conspiring relationship between Notch and integrins through some unknown factor, but little data showing how. To address this issue, we blocked integrin function by incubating endothelial cells with β1 and β3 integrin antibodies. Expression of Notch related genes were then examined through real-time PCR. Several genes showed a change in expression with integrin inhibition. Notably, the expression pattern of some of these genes show a reversal when Notch is inhibited, demonstrating a Notch-dependent effect. β-catenin is one of the genes that showed this dynamic expression profile, and through prior experiments has been shown to contribute in Notch regulation. These results are significant in the fact that integrins may have an impact on Notch signaling.

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