Type V Collagen in Health, Disease, and Fibrosis

Anat Rec (Hoboken). 2016 May;299(5):613-29. doi: 10.1002/ar.23330. Epub 2016 Mar 15.


Type V collagen (COLV) is a regulatory fibril-forming collagen. It has at least three different molecular isoforms-α1(V)2 α2(V), α1(V)3, and α1(V)α2(V)α3(V)-formed by combinations of three different polypeptide α chains-α1(V), α2(V), and α3(V). COL V is a relatively minor collagen of the extracellular matrix (ECM). Morphologically, COLV occurs as heterotypic fibrils with type I collagen (COLI), microfilaments, or 12-nm-thick fibrils. COLV is synthesized in various mesenchymal cells and its gene expression is modulated by TGF-β and growth factors. While resistant to digestion by interstitial collagenases, native and denatured COLV are degraded by metalloproteinases and gelatinases, thereby promoting ECM remodeling. COLV interacts with matrix collagens and structural proteins, conferring structural integrity to tissue scaffolds. It binds matrix macromolecules, modulating cellular behavior, and functions. COLV co-assembles with COLI into heterotypic fibrils in the cornea and skin dermis, acting as a dominant regulator of collagen fibrillogenesis. COLV deficiency is associated with loss of corneal transparency and classic Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, while COLV overexpression is found in cancer, granulation tissue, inflammation, atherosclerosis, and fibrosis of lungs, skin, kidneys, adipose tissue, and liver. COLV isoform containing the α3(V) chain is involved in mediating pancreatic islet cell functions. In the liver, COLV is a minor but regular component of the ECM. Increases in COLV are associated with both early and advanced hepatic fibrosis. The neoepitopes of COLV have been shown to be a useful noninvasive serum biomarker for assessing fibrotic progression and resolution in experimental hepatic fibrosis. COLV is multifunctional in health, disease, and fibrosis.

Keywords: collagen V deficiency and overexpression; collagen V in disease and fibrosis; collagen V neoepitopes; collagen V synthesis and degradation; hepatic fibrosis biomarker.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Collagen Type V / metabolism*
  • Disease*
  • Extracellular Matrix / metabolism*
  • Fibrosis / metabolism
  • Fibrosis / pathology*
  • Humans


  • Collagen Type V