Advertisement

Junctional Complex

  • Margit Pavelka
  • Jürgen Roth

Abstract

Cell to cell contacts are necessary for any higher organisation of cells and provide the basis for the formation of tissues and organs. In epithelia, sheets of cells are formed by close attachment of cells to each other, which is facilitated by cell adhesion molecules and further stabilised and differentiated by formation of specialised cell junctions. In multiple epithelia, cells are attached to each other by junctional complexes, composed of a characteristic combination of occluding and adhering junctions that regulate paracellular traffic and stabilise the tissue. Junctional complexes are symmetrical structures formed between adjacent cells and consist of three components: Firstly, a band of tight junctions, forming an occluding zone in the top position (zonula occludens, ZO, cf. also Fig. 84), secondly, a band of anchoring junctions in the middle position (belt desmosome, zonula adhaerens, ZA), and thirdly, a circle of spot desmosomes in the bottom position (maculae adhaerentes, MA, cf. also Fig. 86).

References

  1. Bazzoni G (2003) The JAM family of junctional adhesion molecules. Curr Opin Cell Biol 15: 525CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. Ebnet K (2008) Organization of multiprotein complexes at cell-cell junctions. Histochem Cell Biol 130: 1CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  3. Green KJ and Gaudry CA (2000) Are desmosomes more than thethers for intermediate filaments? Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol 1: 208CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  4. Kobielak A, Pasolli HA, and Fuchs E (2004) Mammalian forming-1 participates in adherens junctions and polymerisation of linear actin cables. Nat Cell Biol 6: 21CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  5. Tsukita S, Furuse M, and Itoh M (2001) Multifunctional strands in tight junctions. Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol 2: 285CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. Zigmond S (2004) Forming adherens junctions. Nat Cell Biol 6: 12CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag/Wien 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Margit Pavelka
    • 1
  • Jürgen Roth
    • 2
  1. 1.Center for Anatomy and Cell Biology, Department of Cell Biology and Ultrastructure ResearchMedical University of ViennaViennaAustria
  2. 2.Yonsei University Graduate School, World Class University Program, Department of Biomedical ScienceYonsei UniversitySeoulKorea

Personalised recommendations