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The making of a fat cell

preadipocytes to cease dividing and cluster, forming bona fide fat cells.

Integrins are a superfamily of cell surface proteins that are involved in binding to the extracellular matrix, a meshwork of protein and fiber supports outside of cells that can influence their behavior.

"Fat cells require contact in order to stretch and change shape--becoming round cells able to accumulate lots of lipids," said Saltiel. "Many things happen in the generation of fat cells, the transition from one integrin to another is a crucial step."

While there is no evidence as yet to suggest that changes in integrin function underlie metabolic disorders, the fuller understanding of what happens in fat formation opens new avenues for exploration, he said.


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Source:Cell Press


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