R-cadherin influences cell motility via Rho family GTPases

Emhonta Johnson, Christopher S. Theisen, Keith R. Johnson, Margaret J. Wheelock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

38 Scopus citations

Abstract

Classical cadherins are the transmembrane proteins of the adherens junction and mediate cell-cell adhesion via homotypic interactions in the extracellular space. In addition, they mediate connections to the cytoskeleton by means of their association with catenins. Decreased cadherin-mediated adhesion has been implicated as an important component of tumorigenesis. Cadherin switching is central to the epithelial to mesenchymal transitions that drive normal developmental processes. Cadherin switching has also been implicated in tumorigenesis, particularly in metastasis. Recently, cadherins have been shown to be engaged in cellular activities other than adhesion, including motility, invasion, and signaling. In this study, we show that inappropriate expression of R-cadherin in tumor cells results in decreased expression of endogenous cadherins (cadherin switching) and sustained signaling through Rho GTPases. In addition, we show that R-cadherin induces cell motility when expressed in epithelial cells and that this increased motility is dependent upon Rho GTPase activity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31041-31049
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Volume279
Issue number30
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 23 2004

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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