IMR Press / FBL / Volume 9 / Issue 3 / DOI: 10.2741/1393

Frontiers in Bioscience-Landmark (FBL) is published by IMR Press from Volume 26 Issue 5 (2021). Previous articles were published by another publisher on a subscription basis, and they are hosted by IMR Press on imrpress.com as a courtesy and upon agreement with Frontiers in Bioscience.

Open Access Article
Molecular mechanisms of NCAM function
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1 Protein Laboratory, Institute of Molecular Pathology, University of Copenhagen, Panum Institute 6.2, Blegdamsvej 3, DK-2200, Denmark
Academic Editor:Michael Hortsch
Front. Biosci. (Landmark Ed) 2004, 9(3), 2227–2244; https://doi.org/10.2741/1393
Published: 1 September 2004
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Neural cell adhesion molecules)
Abstract

Neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM) was originally characterised as a homophilic cell adhesion molecule (CAM) abundantly expressed in the nervous system. However, the last decade of research has challenged the traditional view and defined novel roles for NCAM. NCAM is now considered a signaling receptor that responds to both homophilic and heterophilic cues, as well as a mediator of cell-cell adhesion. This review describes NCAM function at the molecular level. We discuss recent models for extracellular ligand-interactions of NCAM, and the intracellular signaling cascade that follows to define cellular outcomes such as neurite outgrowth.

Keywords
Cell adhesion molecule
NCAM
Signaling
Homophilic binding
Heterophilic ligands
Review
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