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Receptor Family
Other    Syndecan proteoglycan
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Summary

Anchorage of cells to heparin-binding domains that are prevalent in extracellular matrix (ECM) components is thought to occur primarily through the syndecans, a four-member family of transmembrane heparan sulfate proteoglycans that communicate environmental cues from the ECM to the cytoskeleton and the signaling apparatus of the cell. Syndecan-knockout mice show deficits in tissue repair and response to injury. Alterations in syndecan expression, leading to either overexpression or loss of expression, both of which take place in tumor cells, may have dramatic effects on tumor cell invasion (Couchman 2003). Purified and recombinant syndecan core proteins resolve as dimers, which most probably indicate a dimeric formation on the cell membrane. There is much data on the intracellular interaction, of syndecans but relatively little information regarding the interactions of their ectodomains with extracellular ligands. Syndecans are present in all metazoans, having 4 members in vertebrates and only one in D. melanogaster, C. elegans and C. intestinalis.
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