News of the WeekCell Biology

Integrin Crystal Structure Solved

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Science  07 Sep 2001:
Vol. 293, Issue 5536, pp. 1743-1746
DOI: 10.1126/science.293.5536.1743b

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Often large and insoluble, the proteins found on cell membranes are difficult to induce to form crystals. Now, a team of structural biologists has overcome the obstacles to bag one of the most important membrane proteins yet. In work published online this week by Science (, researchers have determined, for the first time, the crystal structure of one of the many integrins, proteins that play key roles in such important activities as cell division and migration.