Dynamic bonds and their roles in mechanosensing.
Author: Cheng Zhu
Journal:Current opinion in chemical biology
Mechanical forces are ubiquitous in a cell's internal structure and external environment. Mechanosensing is the process that the cell employs to sense its mechanical environment. In receptor-mediated mechanosensing, cell surface receptors interact with immobilized ligands to provide a specific way to receive extracellular force signals to targeted force-transmitting, force-transducing and force-supporting structures inside the cell. Conversely, forces generated endogenously by the cell can be transmitted via cytoplasmic protein-protein interactions and regulate cell surface receptor activities in an 'inside-out' manner. Dynamic force spectroscopy analyzes these interactions on and inside cells to reveal various dynamic bonds. What is more, by integrating analysis of molecular interactions with that of cell signaling events involved in force-sensing and force-responding processes, one can investigate how dynamic bonds regulate the reception, transmission and transduction of mechanical signals.