New method of endocrine signaling discovered

Cells communicate in many ways. The can communicate through direct contact (juxtacrine signaling), over short distances (paracrine signaling), or over large distances (endocrine signaling). Until now, endocrine signaling research has focused primarily on hormones which can transverse relatively large distances in order to convey their message to target cells. Now, scientists at UCLA have discovered a previously unknown method of long distance cell-to-cell communication that does not involve the use of hormones.

In a study published in the American Journal of Translational Research, Dr. Keith Norris, senior author of the research and assistant dean for clinical and translational science at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, and his team found that cells located on the inside of a hormonally impervious membrane were able to receive messages regulating their calcium signaling pathways from cells located outside the membrane.

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