Abstract Cell adhesion directly influences cell growth, differentiation and migration as well as morphogenesis, integrity and repair. The extracellular matrix (ECM) elaborated by osteoblast cells constitutes a regulator of the cell adhesion process and then of the related phenomenon. These regulatory effects of ECM are mediated through integrins and some of them are able to bind RGD sequences. The aim of this study was to determine the role of the sequence and the structure of RGD-containing peptides (linear and cyclic) as well as their role in the cell adhesion process. Cell adhesion assays onto ECM proteins coated surfaces were performed using a range of linear and cyclic RGD-containing peptides. We showed a different human osteoprogenitor cell adhesion according to the coating for ECM proteins and for RGD-peptides. Inhibition assays using peptides showed different responses depending on the coated protein. Depending on the amino-acid sequence and the structure of the peptides (cyclic/linear), we observed 100% inhibition of cell adhesion onto vitronectin. These results suggest the importance of sequence, structure and conformation of the peptide, which may play a crucial function in the ligand/receptor interaction and/or in the stability of the interaction.