Here is a magnificent look at our skin, from this scientist.
"classical geneticist would choose a specific human disease, such as cystic fibrosis or muscular dystrophy, and work his or her way to a defective protein. My laboratory begins with molecular mechanisms, and we work our way to the genetic bases of human diseases that are caused by defects in the proteins we study. We have repeatedly used this reverse genetic approach to successfully elucidate the genetic bases of a variety of human and mouse disorders, ranging from blistering skin disorders and skin tumors/cancers, to a rare form of muscle degeneration and a sensory neurological disorder.".........and
"In the adult, skin epidermis undergoes a constant flux as cells in the innermost layer withdraw from the cell cycle, commit to terminally differentiate, move outward and are sloughed from the body surface. At the surface of the body, these cells must protect themselves from mechanical stresses, and like muscle cells, epidermal keratinocytes produce an elaborate cytoskeleton and are strongly interconnected with their neighbors. How then are epidermal cells able to move through the epithelium and yet maintain their tight adherence necessary to keep harmful microbes out and essential body fluids in so we do not dehydrate? How do epidermal cells respond to injury to downregulate cell adhesion and remodel their cytoskeleton to move to fill a wound site? While we do not yet fully know the answers to these questions, we are learning that the skin epithelium has elaborate and dynamic cellular junctions that utilize the cytoskeleton to establish epithelial polarity and to coordinate cellular movements. We are studying how cells utilize actin filaments, microtubules and intermediate filaments to associate with adhesive junctions and enable cells to adhere to one another and to their underlying substratum.
We are also exploring how cells orchestrate cytoskeletal dynamics to alter cellular junctions and mold cells into a functioning tissue during development. We would like to know how these morphogenetic programs are modified to achieve self-renewal and wound-healing in adult animals. Ultimately, our goal is to relate the cell biology, genetics and developmental biology of these cells to human medicine.."
Now, this sentence held some interest for me:
"we are learning that the skin epithelium has elaborate and dynamic cellular junctions that utilize the cytoskeleton to establish epithelial polarity and to coordinate cellular movements. We are studying how cells utilize actin filaments, microtubules and intermediate filaments to associate with adhesive junctions and enable cells to adhere to one another and to their underlying substratum."
Can anyone explain epithelial polarity? Or expand upon the definition?
Definition I found:
"Cell polarity during development of Drosophila and zebrafish
Epithelial cells polarize along their apico-basal axis and separate apical from basolateral membrane compartments during development. Mature epithelial cells are highly polarized with separate apical and baso-lateral membrane compartments, each with a unique composition of lipids and proteins. Within mature epithelial tissues, cell polarity regulates cellular morphology, intracellular signaling, asymmetric cell division, cell migration, cellular and tissue physiology as well as complex organ morphogenesis. We are interested in the molecular mechanisms that regulate the polarization of epithelial cells and are using zebrafish and fruitflyDrosophila as our experimental systems. We would like to understand: How do the different protein complexes that establish cell polarity interact with each other? What are the signals by which cell polarity is mediated within cells? How is cell polarity regulated within epithelial sheets during morphogenesis of tissues and organs? Our long-term interest is to understand how the cellular mechanisms controlling cell polarity shape our own bodies."
Epithelial polarity matters:
http://www.rosalindfranklin.edu/cms/ana ... img15.html
I still want to know how Muscular Dystrophy came about>..............