Integrins are extracellular matrix receptors that mediate biochemical and mechanical bi-directional signals between the extracellular and intracellular environment of a cell thanks to allosteric conformational changes. In the brain, they are found in both neurons and glial cells, where they play essential roles in several aspects of brain development and function, such as cell migration, axon guidance, synaptogenesis, synaptic plasticity and neuro-inflammation. Although there are many successful examples of how regulating integrin adhesion and signaling can be used for therapeutic purposes, for example for halting tumor progression, this is not the case for the brain, where the growing evidence of the importance of integrins for brain pathophysiology has not translated yet into medical applications. Here, we review recent literature showing how alterations in integrin structure, expression and signaling may be involved in the etiology of autism spectrum disorder, epilepsy, schizophrenia, addiction, depression and Alzheimer's disease. We focus on common mechanisms and recurrent signaling pathways, trying to bridge studies on the genetics and molecular structure of integrins with those on synaptic physiology and brain pathology. Further, we discuss integrin-targeting strategies and their potential benefits for therapeutic purposes in neuropsychiatric disorders.

Integrin adhesion in brain assembly: From molecular structure to neuropsychiatric disorders

Jaudon F.;Thalhammer A.;Cingolani L. A.
2020-01-01

Abstract

Integrins are extracellular matrix receptors that mediate biochemical and mechanical bi-directional signals between the extracellular and intracellular environment of a cell thanks to allosteric conformational changes. In the brain, they are found in both neurons and glial cells, where they play essential roles in several aspects of brain development and function, such as cell migration, axon guidance, synaptogenesis, synaptic plasticity and neuro-inflammation. Although there are many successful examples of how regulating integrin adhesion and signaling can be used for therapeutic purposes, for example for halting tumor progression, this is not the case for the brain, where the growing evidence of the importance of integrins for brain pathophysiology has not translated yet into medical applications. Here, we review recent literature showing how alterations in integrin structure, expression and signaling may be involved in the etiology of autism spectrum disorder, epilepsy, schizophrenia, addiction, depression and Alzheimer's disease. We focus on common mechanisms and recurrent signaling pathways, trying to bridge studies on the genetics and molecular structure of integrins with those on synaptic physiology and brain pathology. Further, we discuss integrin-targeting strategies and their potential benefits for therapeutic purposes in neuropsychiatric disorders.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11368/2978804
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