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It is my pleasure to participate in the reintroduced, and hopefully reinvigorated, CCN Newsletter.

The range of pathways in which CCN proteins are involved and the variety of regulatory proteins with which they interact have been increasing over the last several years. Indeed, the introduction of the Journal of Cell Communication and Signaling and the widened scope of the upcoming 5th International Workshop on the CCN family of Genes in Toronto reflect this interdisciplinary nature.

CCN Express

Second, opinion leaders will be invited to write articles in which issues relating to CCN biology will be discussed. These articles, I hope, will be provocative and inspire new ways of looking at CCN proteins in development, differentiation and disease.

In particular, writers will be asked to discuss their opinion as to what the CCN molecules are playing in the various processes. In keeping with the increased appreciation of the multifaceted role that CCN members play as matricellular proteins, the scope of these reviews will also cover key matricellular proteins as well.

Examples of reviews in the planning stage include those covering CCN polymorphisms in disease, CCN2 in chondrogenesis, CCN2 in diabetes and the matricellular protein periostin.

Both 'Bits and Bytes' and the opinion pieces of the 'CCN Express' will be published not only in the CCN newsletter, but also in the Journal of Cell Communication and Signaling (JCCS) to ensure the widest distribution of the material.

Andrew Leask, PhD