FACIT collagens: diverse molecular bridges in extracellular matrices

Trends Biochem Sci. 1991 May;16(5):191-4. doi: 10.1016/0968-0004(91)90074-6.


The collagens form a large family of proteins. Collagen fibrils, composed of staggered arrays of fibrillar collagen molecules (types I, II, III, V and XI), provide a supporting scaffold for extracellular matrices of connective tissues. The non-fibrillar collagens are less abundant than the fibrillar collagens, but it is becoming clear that they have important functions in the matrix. Recently, a group with unique structural characteristics has been defined and named the FACIT (Fibril-Associated Collagens with Interrupted Triple-helices) group. There is evidence that these collagens may serve as molecular bridges that are important for the organization and stability of extracellular matrices.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cartilage / metabolism
  • Collagen / chemistry*
  • Collagen / genetics
  • Connective Tissue / metabolism
  • Extracellular Matrix / metabolism*


  • Collagen