Chapter 7. Cell Matrix Adhesion in Three Dimensions

  1. Prof. Dr. Susan E. LaFlamme2 and
  2. Prof. Andrew P. Kowalczyk3
  1. Patricia J. Keely

Published Online: 11 APR 2008

DOI: 10.1002/9783527622092.ch7

Cell Junctions: Adhesion, Development, and Disease

Cell Junctions: Adhesion, Development, and Disease

How to Cite

Keely, P. J. (2008) Cell Matrix Adhesion in Three Dimensions, in Cell Junctions: Adhesion, Development, and Disease (eds S. E. LaFlamme and A. P. Kowalczyk), Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim, Germany. doi: 10.1002/9783527622092.ch7

Editor Information

  1. 2

    Albany Medical College, Center for Cell Biology and Cancer Research, 47 New Scotland Avenue, Albany, NY 12208, USA

  2. 3

    Emory University School of Medicine, Departments of Cell Biology and Dermatology, 615 Michael Street, Atlanta, GA 30322, USA

Author Information

  1. University of Wisconsin, Department of Pharmacology, Paul C. Carbone Comprehensive Cancer Center, 1300 University Ave, Madison, WI 53704, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 11 APR 2008
  2. Published Print: 26 MAR 2008

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9783527318827

Online ISBN: 9783527622092



  • cell junctions;
  • cell–matrix junctions;
  • cell matrix adhesion;
  • three dimensions;
  • model 3D matrices;
  • cell behaviour;
  • adhesive structures;
  • difference between 3D and 2D matrices;
  • compliancy;
  • elastic modulus;
  • cellular response to ECMs


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Introduction

  • Model 3D Matrices for Investigations of Cell Behavior

    • Matrigel/Reconstituted Basement Membrane (rBM)

    • Collagen Gels

    • Fibrin Gels

    • Cell-Derived Fibronectin-Based Matrices

    • Engineered 3D Matrices and Microfluidic Chambers

  • Cell Behavior and Adhesive Structures Differ between 3D and 2D Matrices

  • “Compliancy” or Elastic Modulus Determines Cellular Response to ECMs

    • Cellular Contractility and the Response to Matrix Compliance

    • Rho Regulates the Cytoskeleton and Contractility

    • Rho/ROCK, Contractility, and Focal Adhesion Formation

    • Focal Adhesions as Transducers of Biophysical Signals

  • A Model for Cellular Response to 3D Matrices Varying in Compliance

  • Acknowledgments

  • References