Transformation of cell adhesion properties by exogenously introduced E-cadherin cDNA

Nature. 1987 Sep;329(6137):341-3. doi: 10.1038/329341a0.


E-cadherin is a cell surface glycoprotein responsible for Ca2+-dependent intercellular adhesion between epithelial cells; it is also called uvomorulin, L-CAM (ref. 3), cell-CAM 120/80 (ref.4) or Arc-1 (ref. 5). Because blocking the action of E-cadherin by monoclonal antibodies causes dispersion of compact cell colonies, this molecule is thought to be an important factor for maintenance of multicellular systems. To demonstrate directly that E-cadherin is involved in cell-cell adhesion, we cloned full-length cDNA encoding E-cadherin from F9 cells and introduced it into L fibroblasts deficient in E-cadherin. These L cells acquire strong Ca2+-dependent aggregating activity by expressing the E-cadherin derived from the introduced cDNA and were morphologically transformed so as to form colonies in which cells were tightly connected to each other.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Cadherins
  • Calcium / pharmacology
  • Cell Adhesion
  • Cell Line
  • DNA / genetics*
  • DNA, Recombinant
  • Glycoproteins / genetics
  • Glycoproteins / physiology*
  • L Cells / cytology
  • Mice
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Teratoma
  • Transfection
  • Transformation, Genetic*


  • Cadherins
  • DNA, Recombinant
  • Glycoproteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • DNA
  • Calcium