Low concentrations of fibrinogen increase cell migration speed on fibronectin/fibrinogen composite cables

Zubair Ahmed, S. Underwood, Robert A. Brown

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Citations (Scopus)


Optimal cell migration rate in a given direction (velocity) is a function of speed and directional persistence. Migration speed has been reported to be a function of adhesion strength such that optimal cell migration occurs where the cell is able to form enough stable attachments for good traction while allowing attachments at the trailing end to be broken during locomotion. This is particularly important in peripheral nerve regeneration where rapid Schwann cell recruitment across the injury site will lead to better functional recovery and reduced end organ atrophy. The aim here was to investigate the effects of changing adhesion properties of Fn materials by adding fibrinogen in order to design an optimal material for repair processes. Cell migration on Fn/Fg-cables increased with increasing content of %Fg to a peak cell migration velocity (Schwann cells) of 49 microm/h, at 50% Fg. Further increases in Fg content hindered cell migration. Vinculin-rich attachment plaques were reduced in a dose-dependent manner as the content of %Fg was increased whilst cells at the optimum Fg proportion for cell migration were moderately well spread. These results support the idea that optimum cell migration rates occur at intermediate attachment conditions, in this case at 50% Fg. These results show that incorporation of Fg into Fn-based materials will enhance the speed of Schwann cell migration and this would be likely to improve peripheral nerve regeneration. Indeed, directionally aligned Fn-based materials can now be engineered to give optimal cell velocity during repair cell recruitment in a range of tissue repair or tissue engineering applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6-16
Number of pages11
JournalCell Motility and the Cytoskeleton
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 23 May 2000


  • Animals
  • Cell Adhesion/drug effects
  • Cell Movement/drug effects
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Dermis/cytology
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Fibrinogen/pharmacology
  • Fibroblasts/chemistry
  • Fibronectins/pharmacology
  • Glass
  • Humans
  • Rats
  • Schwann Cells/chemistry
  • Tendons/cytology
  • Vinculin/analysis


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