Epitheliomesenchymal interactions are known to play a crucial role during odontogenesis. Since epithelial cell-cell and cell-matrix interactions may also be involved in enamel organ histomorphogenesis, we investigated the localization of proteins associated with junctional complexes in mouse and rat first lower molars by indirect immunofluorescence. Adherens junctions were detected using antibodies directed against E-cadherin, beta-catenin, and plakoglobin (gamma-catenin). Desmosomes were localized with antibodies against desmoglein, and hemidesmosomes using antibodies against BP-230 and HD-1 proteins. When the inner dental epithelium differentiates, a decrease of E-cadherin, plakoglobin, and BP-230 is seen. An asymmetric distribution of plakoglobin, desmoglein, and BP-230 between the lateral and medial side of the tooth exists; desmoglein, which was first restricted to the gubernaculum dentis, progressively accumulated in the stellate reticulum, the stratum intermedium, and the basal pole of ameloblasts. The specific temporospatial distributions patterns of these antigens suggests a direct involvement of adherens junctions, desmosomes, and hemidesmosomes in the development of the murine first lower molar.