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Integrins are cell surface receptors that mediate cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions by recognizing binding motifs in extracellular matrix proteins.
Integrins facilitate adhesion, proliferation, and migration of cells. For example, integrins mediate leukocyte migration to the site of injury. As transmembrane linkers between the cytoskeleton and the extracellular matrix, integrins recruit a variety of proteins and influence signaling pathways that regulate gene expression, cell cycle progression and survival.
Integrins are a significant target for pharmaceutical research and have proven to be important therapeutic targets in the treatment of some inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.