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Cell migration is a force-dependent adaptive process mediated by integrin-dependent adhesion as well as other yet poorly defined interactions to the extracellular matrix. Using enzymatic multi-targeted digestion of sugar moieties on the surface of mesenchymal cells and leukocytes after interference with integrin function, we demonstrate that the surface glycocalyx represents an independent adhesion system. The glycocalyx mediates cell attachment to ECM ligand in the 100-500 pN force range anddoi:10.1101/2020.06.12.149096 fatcat:cg7p2pgigrabxacxlewre2pdwy