T-lymphocyte-epithelial-cell interactions: integrin alpha(E)(CD103)beta(7), LEEP-CAM and chemokines

Curr Opin Cell Biol. 2000 Oct;12(5):563-8. doi: 10.1016/s0955-0674(00)00132-0.


The epithelia are the avascular layers of cells that cover the environment-exposed surfaces of the body. It appears that T cells localize to selected sites in or adjacent to epithelia via the selective expression of adhesion molecules and chemokine receptors on T cells. These bind to counter-receptors and to chemokines expressed by epithelial cells. Recently, there has been an advance in our understanding of the interaction of the alpha(Ebeta7) integrin with its epithelial cell ligand, E-cadherin. In addition, a new adhesion molecule has been identified on non-intestinal epithelial cells, termed lymphocyte-endothelial-epithelial-cell adhesion molecule (LEEP-CAM). Finally, there have been advances in our understanding of the role of skin- or gut-epithelia-derived chemokines in regulating activated T cell homing to these sites.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cadherins / metabolism
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / metabolism
  • Cell Communication*
  • Chemokines / metabolism
  • Epithelial Cells / cytology
  • Epithelial Cells / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Integrins / metabolism
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / metabolism
  • Protein Binding
  • T-Lymphocytes / cytology
  • T-Lymphocytes / metabolism*


  • Cadherins
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Chemokines
  • Integrins
  • LEEP-CAM protein, human
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • integrin alphaEbeta7