Epithelial cell-substrate adhesion in the cornea: localization of actin, talin, integrin, and fibronection [corrected]

Exp Eye Res. 1991 Mar;52(3):261-7. doi: 10.1016/0014-4835(91)90089-w.


During corneal wound healing, epithelial cells migrate and spread over a basement membrane to cover the denuded area. We have initiated studies on the proteins involved in this cell-substrate interaction. In the present report, we show the distribution of actin, talin, integrin and fibronectin in the unwounded chicken corneal epithelium. Rhodamine-phalloidin and antibodies against talin, the beta-subunit of integrin, and fibronectin were used to fluorescently label semi-thin cryosections of chicken cornea. Phalloidin labeling indicated the presence of f-actin around the boundaries of all epithelial cells. Antitalin labeled the most basal aspect of the basal cells. Diffuse cytoplasmic labeling of the basal cells was also seen. Integrin was detected by the polyclonal anti-CSAT and monoclonal 30B6 antibodies. With both antibodies, the basal cells were outlined by label. These cells were similarly labeled by antifibronectin. Less distinct labeling of fibronectin was present around the boundaries of the outer epithelial cells. Our results indicate that many of the proteins associated with cell-substrate adherens junctions in other systems are also present in cell-substrate adhesion of the corneal epithelium. Details of the distribution of some of the proteins appear to be somewhat unusual, however.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Actins / analysis*
  • Animals
  • Blotting, Western
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Chickens
  • Cytoskeletal Proteins / analysis
  • Electrophoresis, Polyacrylamide Gel
  • Endothelium, Corneal / chemistry*
  • Fibronectins / analysis*
  • Integrins / analysis*
  • Talin


  • Actins
  • Cytoskeletal Proteins
  • Fibronectins
  • Integrins
  • Talin