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      Clustering T cell GM1 Lipid Rafts Increases Cellular Resistance to Shear on Fibronectin through Changes in Integrin Affinity and Cytoskeletal Dynamics

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          Lipid rafts are small laterally mobile microdomains that are highly enriched in lymphocyte signaling molecules. GM1 gangliosides are a common lipid raft component and have been shown to be important in many T cell functions. The aggregation of specific GM1 lipid rafts can control many T cell activation events, including their novel association with T cell integrins. We found that clustering GM1 lipid rafts can regulate β1 integrin function. This was apparent through increased resistance to shear flow dependent detachment of T cells adherent to the α4β1 and α5β1 integrin ligand fibronectin (FN). Adhesion strengthening as a result of clustering GM1 enriched lipid rafts correlated with increased cellular rigidity and morphology through the localization of cortical F-actin, the resistance to shear induced cell stretching, and an increase in the surface area and symmetry of the contact area between the cell surface and adhesive substrate. Furthermore, clustering GM1 lipid rafts could initiate integrin “inside-out” signaling mechanisms. This was seen through increased integrin-cytoskeleton associations and enhanced soluble binding of FN and VCAM-1 suggesting the induction of high affinity integrin conformations. The activation of these adhesion strengthening characteristics appear to be specific for the aggregation of GM1 lipid rafts as the aggregation of the heterogeneous raft associated molecule CD59 failed to activate these functions. These findings indicate a novel mechanism to signal to β1 integrins and to activate adhesion strengthening processes.

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          Most cited references 59

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          Functional rafts in cell membranes.

          A new aspect of cell membrane structure is presented, based on the dynamic clustering of sphingolipids and cholesterol to form rafts that move within the fluid bilayer. It is proposed that these rafts function as platforms for the attachment of proteins when membranes are moved around inside the cell and during signal transduction.
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            Hemodynamic shear stress and its role in atherosclerosis.

             Adel Malek (1999)
            Atherosclerosis, the leading cause of death in the developed world and nearly the leading cause in the developing world, is associated with systemic risk factors including hypertension, smoking, hyperlipidemia, and diabetes mellitus, among others. Nonetheless, atherosclerosis remains a geometrically focal disease, preferentially affecting the outer edges of vessel bifurcations. In these predisposed areas, hemodynamic shear stress, the frictional force acting on the endothelial cell surface as a result of blood flow, is weaker than in protected regions. Studies have identified hemodynamic shear stress as an important determinant of endothelial function and phenotype. Arterial-level shear stress (>15 dyne/cm2) induces endothelial quiescence and an atheroprotective gene expression profile, while low shear stress (<4 dyne/cm2), which is prevalent at atherosclerosis-prone sites, stimulates an atherogenic phenotype. The functional regulation of the endothelium by local hemodynamic shear stress provides a model for understanding the focal propensity of atherosclerosis in the setting of systemic factors and may help guide future therapeutic strategies.
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              A mechanosensory complex that mediates the endothelial cell response to fluid shear stress.

              Shear stress is a fundamental determinant of vascular homeostasis, regulating vascular remodelling, cardiac development and atherogenesis, but the mechanisms of transduction are poorly understood. Previous work showed that the conversion of integrins to a high-affinity state mediates a subset of shear responses, including cell alignment and gene expression. Here we investigate the pathway upstream of integrin activation. PECAM-1 (which directly transmits mechanical force), vascular endothelial cell cadherin (which functions as an adaptor) and VEGFR2 (which activates phosphatidylinositol-3-OH kinase) comprise a mechanosensory complex. Together, these receptors are sufficient to confer responsiveness to flow in heterologous cells. In support of the relevance of this pathway in vivo, PECAM-1-knockout mice do not activate NF-kappaB and downstream inflammatory genes in regions of disturbed flow. Therefore, this mechanosensing pathway is required for the earliest-known events in atherogenesis.

                Author and article information

                Immunol Cell Biol
                Immunology and cell biology
                2 December 2008
                13 January 2009
                May-Jun 2009
                1 November 2009
                : 87
                : 4
                : 324-336
                [* ]Department of Immunology, The University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, unit 901, P.O. Box 1301402, Houston, Texas, 77030, USA
                []Encysive Pharmaceuticals Incorporated, Houston, Texas, 77030, USA
                Funded by: National Cancer Institute : NCI
                Award ID: T32 CA009598-19 ||CA
                Funded by: National Cancer Institute : NCI
                Award ID: T32 CA009598-18 ||CA
                Funded by: National Cancer Institute : NCI
                Award ID: T32 CA009598-17 ||CA
                Funded by: National Cancer Institute : NCI
                Award ID: T32 CA009598-16 ||CA

                Cell biology

                human, adhesion molecules, t cells, inflammation, cell trafficking


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