MEDICAL HYPOTHESES AND RESEARCH
VOL. 1, No. 1, January 2005


B. Wang and J. G. Geng [2005] Med Hypotheses Res 2: 315-323.


Highly-conserved Mechanisms of Cell Migration and
Contact in Immune and Nervous Systems


Biao Wang and Jian-Guo Geng*

Vascular Biology Center and Division of Hematology, Oncology and Transplantation,
University of Minnesota Medical School, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA


Abstract. Despite their very distinct tissue architectures and also very different
biological mandates, the immune and nervous systems of the body resemble each other in
many unique ways and also exert somewhat comparable tasks. Prominent in this regard is
the similar repertoire of functional macromolecules, including SDF-1/CXCR4, Slit/Robo,
integrins, semaphorins and neuropilins, which play a crucial role in the development and
normal functioning of both systems. In this article, we discuss the emerging recent
evidence which supports the notion that leukocytes and neurons are both controlled by
highly-conserved similar molecular mechanisms for their structural development as well
as functional regulations.


*Address all correspondence to: Dr. Jian-Guo Geng, Vascular Biology Center and
Division of Hematology, Oncology and Transplantation, University of Minnesota Medical
School, MMC 480, 14-152 Phillips-Wangensteen Building, 420 Delaware Street S.E.,
Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA. Phone: 612-624-6940; Fax: 612-625-6919; E-Mail:
Gengx011@umn.edu


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