Regulation of gene expression and cell function by extracellular matrix

Crit Rev Eukaryot Gene Expr. 1993;3(2):137-54.


Cells within tissues of multicellular organisms are intimately surrounded by a complex arrangement of extracellular proteins that together act as an informational entity in the sense that they receive, impart, and integrate structural and functional signals. This macromolecular network, composed largely of glycoproteins and proteoglycans, is collectively known as the extracellular matrix (ECM). In this review we aim to show that the ECM plays a fundamental role in both the control of gene expression and the induction and maintenance of tissue-specific function. Also, we revisit a general model that describes how the ECM together with the cytoskeleton and nuclear matrix may regulate tissue-specific gene expression.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Extracellular Matrix / physiology*
  • Gene Expression Regulation*
  • Humans
  • Keratinocytes / physiology
  • Liver / physiology
  • Mammary Glands, Animal / physiology