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Front Biosci (Schol Ed). 2009 Jun 1;1:61-7.

Regulation of cadherin-based epithelial cell adhesion by endocytosis.

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Department of Dermatology, Northwestern University, The Feinberg School of Medicine, Chicago, IL 60611, USA.


Regulation of cadherin-based adhesion is an important but poorly studied question. Little is known which mechanisms control the size, number, strength, dynamics, and motility of adherens junctions. Cadherin endocytosis has been suggested to be one such mechanism. Recent studies have revealed several pathways of cadherin endocytosis, each of which appears to have specific functions. These pathways are surprisingly similar to those responsible for endocytosis of growth factor receptors. They could mediate the uptake of cadherin from both the inside and outside of adherens junctions thereby controlling different parameters of cell-cell adhesion structures.

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