Force as a Facilitator of Integrin Conformational Changes during Leukocyte Arrest on Blood Vessels and Antigen-Presenting Cells

Department of Immunology, Weizmann Institute of Science, Rehovot, Israel.
Immunity (Impact Factor: 19.75). 02/2007; 26(1):17-27. DOI: 10.1016/j.immuni.2007.01.002
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Integrins comprise a large family of cell-cell and cell-matrix adhesion receptors that rapidly modulate their adhesiveness. The arrest of leukocyte integrins on target vascular beds involves instantaneous conformational switches generating shear-resistant adhesions. Structural data suggest that these integrins are maintained in low-affinity conformations and must rapidly undergo conformational switches transduced via cytoplasmic changes ("inside-out" signaling) and simultaneous ligand-induced rearrangements ("outside-in"). This bidirectional activation is accelerated by signals from endothelial chemoattractants (chemokines). Recent studies predict that shear forces in the piconewton (pN) range per integrin can facilitate these biochemical switches. After extravasation, antigen recognition involves smaller internal forces from cytoskeletal motors and actin polymers forming the immune synapse. In this review, we address how forces facilitate allosteric integrin activation by biochemical signals. Evidence suggests that preformed cytoskeletal anchorage rather than free integrin mobility is key for force-enhanced integrin activation by chemokines and TCR signals.

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Available from: Michael L Dustin, Jun 20, 2015
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    ABSTRACT: Cells contain several mechanosensing components that transduce mechanical signals into biochemical cascades. During cell-ECM adhesion, a complex network of molecules mechanically couples the extracellular matrix (ECM), cytoskeleton, and nucleoskeleton. The network comprises transmembrane receptor proteins and focal adhesions, which link the ECM and cytoskeleton. Additionally, recently identified protein complexes extend this linkage to the nucleus by linking the cytoskeleton and the nucleoskeleton. Despite numerous studies in this field, due to the complexity of this network, our knowledge of the mechanisms of cell-ECM adhesion at the molecular level remains remarkably incomplete. Herein, we present a review of the structures of key molecules involved in cell-ECM adhesion, along with an evaluation of their predicted roles in mechanical sensing. Additionally, specific binding events prompted by force-induced conformational changes of each molecule are discussed. Finally, we propose a model for the biomechanical events prominent in cell-ECM adhesion.
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