Table of Contents
Journal of Signal Transduction
Volume 2011, Article ID 738137, 18 pages
Review Article

Integrin Signaling, Cell Survival, and Anoikis: Distinctions, Differences, and Differentiation

1Département d'Anatomie et de Biologie Cellulaire, Faculté de Médecine et des Sciences de la Santé, Université de Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, QC, Canada J1H 5N4
2Thématique de Recherche en Physiopathologie Digestive du Centre de Recherches Cliniques Étienne-Le Bel, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Sherbrooke, Campus Fleurimont, Sherbrooke, QC, Canada J1H 5N4

Received 12 September 2010; Revised 6 January 2011; Accepted 10 March 2011

Academic Editor: A. Yoshimura

Copyright © 2011 Pierre H. Vachon. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Cell survival and apoptosis implicate an increasing complexity of players and signaling pathways which regulate not only the decision-making process of surviving (or dying), but as well the execution of cell death proper. The same complex nature applies to anoikis, a form of caspase-dependent apoptosis that is largely regulated by integrin-mediated, cell-extracellular matrix interactions. Not surprisingly, the regulation of cell survival, apoptosis, and anoikis furthermore implicates additional mechanistic distinctions according to the specific tissue, cell type, and species. Incidentally, studies in recent years have unearthed yet another layer of complexity in the regulation of these cell processes, namely, the implication of cell differentiation state-specific mechanisms. Further analyses of such differentiation state-distinct mechanisms, either under normal or physiopathological contexts, should increase our understanding of diseases which implicate a deregulation of integrin function, cell survival, and anoikis.