E-cadherin and the cytoskeletal network in colorectal cancer development and metastasis

Andrea Buda, Massimo Pignatelli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Citations (Scopus)


Abnormalities in the expression and functional activity of cell adhesion molecules are implicated in the development and progression of the majority of colorectal cancers (CRC). Cellcell adhesion molecule E-cadherin regulates cell polarity, differentiation, proliferation and migration through its intimate association to the actin cytoskeletal network. During colorectal carcinogenesis changes in intercellular adhesion and dynamic rearrangements in the actin cytoskeleton result in altered signalling and migration with loss of contact inhibition. The adenomatous polyposis coli (APC) protein, besides its established role in the β catenin/Wnt signalling pathway, can coordinate microtubule and actin organization during cell migration. The actin-bundling protein Fascin promotes cell motility and is overexpressed in CRC. Based on recent molecular and pathological studies, this review focusses on the role of these molecules sharing the common feature of being associated with the cytoskeletal network during colorectal carcinogenesis and metastasis. The potential use of these molecules as prognostic markers and/or therapeutic targets will also be discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-143
Number of pages11
JournalCell Communication and Adhesion
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2011


  • APC
  • Cytoskeleton
  • E-cadherin
  • Fascin
  • adhesion molecules
  • colorectal cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'E-cadherin and the cytoskeletal network in colorectal cancer development and metastasis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this