Chapter 19. Keratin


Adrianna Antoszewska, Dorota Bartusik-Aebisher and David Aebisher
Medical College of The University of Rzeszów, Poland

Part of the book: The Biochemical Guide to Proteins


Intermediate keratin filaments are abundant in the epithelium and form cytoskeleton networks that are responsible for functions specific to a given cell type, such as adhesion, migration and metabolism. These functions are supported by the continuous cycle of keratin fiber replacement. This multi-step process keeps the cytoskeleton in motion, facilitating rapid and protein-biosynthetic-independent reconstruction of the network while keeping it intact. All epithelial cells have a visible network of keratin intermediate fibers (IF) in their cytoplasm. Keratins not only provide physical integrity in epithelial cells, but also play important roles in metabolic processes. The current goal to be achieved is to understand the molecular mechanisms of regulation of the keratin cycle in relation to the action network and microtubules, and in the context of the function of epithelial tissue.

Keywords: keratins, epithelial cells, intermediate fibers (if), cell membrane, hepatocytes


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