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NIH Scientists Explain How Cells Move in 3D

NIDCD intramural scientists Richard Chadwick, Ph.D., and Núria Gavara, Ph.D., along with researchers from the National Institute of Dental and Craniofacial Research (NIDCR), have published a paper in the April 30, 2012, issue of The Journal of Cell Biology. Nonpolarized signaling reveals two distinct modes of 3D cell migration identifies two ways in which cells can migrate in three dimensions, as well as the intracellular and extracellular factors that govern which mode of migration will occur.

The findings are important because cell migration plays a central role in a variety of biological processes, including fetal development, wound healing, inflammation, and the spread of cancer cells from one organ to another. The findings are also discussed in a commentary, Cell migration: Fibroblasts find a new way to get ahead, published in the same issue.

Dr. Chadwick is chief of the section on auditory mechanics in the laboratory of cellular biology at NIDCD. Dr. Gavara was a visiting fellow in the lab.