Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition

One of the basic processes happening during tissue regeneration is transformation of epithelial cells into mesenchymal and the other way around, mesenchymal cells into epithelial. The term is epithelial-mesenchymal transition. The picture above shows the difference between these two basic cell phenotypes. Note, that there are no other ones in multicellular tissues. Epithelial cells are bound tightly to each other and to extracellular matrix. The extracellular matrix is the basal lamina, which serves as a sort of bed for epithelial cells, which form a “topping”. Mesenchymal cells are located within a 3D extracelllular matrix. They are bipolar, which means they have different cytoskeleton arrangement and distinct organelle distribution inside them. For example, mesenchymal cells have lamellipodia at their leading edge. These structures help them migrate inside the tissue.


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Filed under Regeneration

One response to “Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition

  1. ..Reporting in researchers describe the discovery of a specific protein called disabled-2 Dab2 that switches on the process that releases cancer cells from the original tumor and allows the cells to spread and develop into new tumors in other parts of the body. ..The process called epithelial-mesenchymal transdifferientiation EMT has been known to play a role in releasing cells epithelial cells on the surface of the solid tumor and transforming them into transient mesenchymal cell cells with the ability to start to grow a new tumor. The EMT process takes place when some of those cells dislodge from the surface and undergo a transformation into a fibrous mesenchymal cell maker with the ability to migrate.

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