[ Back to EurekAlert! ]

Contact: Caroline Perry
cperry@seas.harvard.edu
Harvard University

Proposed Signaling Mechanism

Caption: The Harvard researchers proposed a mechanism to explain how the stiffness and composition of the extracellular matrix could activate signaling pathways that produce a malignant phenotype. In normal conditions (left column), membrane components can fluctuate, overlap, and cluster, forming hemidesmosomes. In a stiffer matrix, they are unable to do so (center). The problem can be corrected in vitro by increasing the concentration of laminin (right).

Credit: Image courtesy of Ovijit Chaudhuri, Harvard University.

Usage Restrictions: Editorial use only.

Related news release: Tugging on the 'malignant' switch


[ Back to EurekAlert! ]