Periaxin, a novel protein of myelinating Schwann cells with a possible role in axonal ensheathment

Neuron. 1994 Mar;12(3):497-508. doi: 10.1016/0896-6273(94)90208-9.


We report the cloning and subcellular localization of a novel Schwann cell-specific protein of 147 kd that we have named periaxin. Periaxin has a remarkable domain of repetitive pentameric units in the primary sequence. It is expressed in the first uncompacted whorls of membrane that ensheathe the axon, and further synthesis of the protein in the rat sciatic nerve parallels the deposition of myelin. In mature myelin, periaxin colocalizes with the myelin-associated glycoprotein in the cytoplasm-filled periaxonal regions of the sheath but is excluded from compact myelin. We propose that periaxin has a role in axon-glial interactions, possibly by interacting with the cytoplasmic domains of integral membrane proteins such as myelin-associated glycoprotein in the periaxonal regions of the Schwann cell plasma membrane.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Axons / physiology*
  • Base Sequence
  • Cloning, Molecular
  • Membrane Proteins / genetics
  • Membrane Proteins / metabolism
  • Membrane Proteins / physiology*
  • Microscopy, Immunoelectron
  • Molecular Probes / genetics
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Myelin Sheath / metabolism
  • Myelin Sheath / physiology*
  • Peripheral Nerves / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Schwann Cells / physiology*
  • Sciatic Nerve / growth & development
  • Sciatic Nerve / metabolism
  • Sciatic Nerve / ultrastructure
  • Subcellular Fractions / metabolism


  • Membrane Proteins
  • Molecular Probes
  • periaxin

Associated data

  • GENBANK/Z29649