The emergence of multicellular animals could only take place once evolution had produced molecular mechanisms for cell adhesion and communication. Today, all metazoans express integrin-type adhesion receptors and receptors for growth factors. Integrins recognize extracellular matrix proteins and respective receptors on other cells and, following ligand binding, can activate the same cellular signaling pathways that are regulated by growth factor receptors. Recent reports have indicated that the two receptor systems also collaborate in many other ways. Here, we review the present information concerning the role of integrins as assisting growth factor receptors and the interplay between the receptors in cell signaling and in the orchestration of receptor recycling.
- Cell adhesion
- Growth factor