Intermediate Filaments as Signaling Platforms

Science's STKE  19 Dec 2006:
Vol. 2006, Issue 366, pp. pe53
DOI: 10.1126/stke.3662006pe53

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Intermediate filaments (IFs) are cytoskeletal structures that are crucial for maintaining the structural and mechanical integrity of cells and tissues. Intriguingly, a wide range of previously unknown nonmechanical roles for the IF cytoskeleton are emerging: Recent studies have linked IFs to the integration of signals related to the determination of cell size, the regulation of cell migration and cell survival, and the buffering of the effects of stress-activated kinases. The characteristic structural features and expression patterns of the different members of this diverse family of highly abundant proteins make them well suited to act as cell- and tissue-specific modifiers and organizers of signaling.

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