Receptor communication within the lymphocyte plasma membrane: a role for the thrombospondin family of matricellular proteins
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- Forslöw, A., Liu, Z. & Sundqvist, K.G. Cell. Mol. Life Sci. (2007) 64: 66. doi:10.1007/s00018-006-6255-8
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Lymphocytes, the principal cells of the immune system, carry out immune surveillance throughout the body by their unique capacity to constantly reposition themselves between a free-floating vascular state and a tissue state characterized by migration and frequent adhesive interactions with endothelial cells and components of the extracellular matrix. Therefore, mechanisms co-ordinating adhesion and migration with signals delivered through antigen recognition probably play a pivotal role for the regulation of lymphocyte behaviour and function. Endogenous thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1) seems to be the hub in such a mechanism for autocrine regulation of T cell adhesion and migration. TSP-1 functions as a mediator of cis interaction of vital receptors within the T lymphocyte plasma membrane, including integrins, low density lipoprotein receptor-related protein, calreticulin and integrin-associated protein.