Intermediate filaments are assembled from a diverse group of evolutionary conserved proteins and are specified in a tissue-dependent, cell type-dependent, and context-dependent fashion in the body. Genetic mutations in intermediate filament proteins account for a large number of diseases, ranging from skin fragility conditions to cardiomyopathies and premature aging. Keratins, the epithelial-specific intermediate filaments, are now recognized as multi-faceted effectors in their native context. In this review, we emphasize the recent progress made in defining the role of keratins towards the regulation of cytoarchitecture, cell growth and proliferation, apoptosis, and cell motility during embryonic development, in normal adult tissues, and in select diseases such as cancer.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology