Proteolytic remodeling of the synaptic cell adhesion molecules (CAMs) by metzincins in synaptic plasticity

Neurochem Res. 2013 Jun;38(6):1113-21. doi: 10.1007/s11064-012-0919-6. Epub 2012 Nov 4.


Cell adhesion molecules participate in the formation, maturation, function and plasticity of synaptic connections. The growing body of evidence indicates that in the regulation of the synaptic plasticity, in which these molecules play pivotal role, also the proteolytic processes are involved. This review focuses on extracellular proteolysis of the cell adhesion molecules by specific subgroup of the matrix metalloproteinases, a disintegrin and metalloproteases and a disintegrin and metalloproteinase with thrombospondin motifs, jointly referred to as metzincins, in driving coordinated synaptic structural and functional modifications underlying synaptic plasticity in the adult brain.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • ADAM Proteins / metabolism*
  • Animals
  • Cadherins / metabolism
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules / metabolism*
  • Dystroglycans / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulins / metabolism
  • Matrix Metalloproteinases / metabolism*
  • Nectins
  • Neural Cell Adhesion Molecule L1 / metabolism
  • Neural Cell Adhesion Molecules / metabolism
  • Neuronal Plasticity / physiology*
  • Proteolysis
  • Synapses / metabolism*
  • Syndecans / metabolism
  • Thrombospondins / metabolism*


  • Cadherins
  • Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Immunoglobulins
  • Nectins
  • Neural Cell Adhesion Molecule L1
  • Neural Cell Adhesion Molecules
  • Syndecans
  • Thrombospondins
  • Dystroglycans
  • ADAM Proteins
  • Matrix Metalloproteinases