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Curr Opin Cell Biol. 2007 Oct;19(5):508-14.

Making and breaking contacts: the cellular biology of cadherin regulation.

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Division of Molecular Cell Biology, Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Brisbane, Queensland 4072, Australia.


Cadherin-mediated cell-cell interactions are dynamic processes, and cadherin function is tightly regulated in response to cellular context and signaling. Ultimately, cadherin regulation is likely to reflect the interplay between a range of fundamental cellular processes, including surface organization of receptors, cytoskeletal organization and cell trafficking, that are coordinated by signaling events. In this review we focus on recent advances in understanding how interplay with membrane trafficking and other cell-cell junctions can control cadherin function. The endocytosis of cadherins, and their post-internalization fate, influences surface expression and metabolic stability of these adhesion receptors. Similarly, at the surface, components of tight junctions provide a mode of cross-talk that regulates assembly of adherens junctions.

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