The head domain of plakophilin-1 binds to desmoplakin and enhances its recruitment to desmosomes. Implications for cutaneous disease

Andrew P. Kowalczyk, Mechthild Hatzfeld, Elayne A. Bornslaeger, Daniel S. Kopp, Jeffrey E. Borgwardt, Connie M. Corcoran, Aaron Settler, Kathleen J. Green*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

118 Scopus citations

Abstract

The contribution of desmosomes to epidermal integrity is evident in the inherited blistering disorder associated with the absence of a functional gene for plakophilin-1. To define the function of plakophilin-1 in desmosome assembly, interactions among the desmosomal cadherins, desmoplakin, and the armadillo family members plakoglobin and plakophilin-1 were examined. In transient expression assays, plakophilin-1 formed complexes with a desmoplakin amino-terminal domain and enhanced its recruitment to cell-cell borders; this recruitment was not dependent on the equimolar expression of desmosomal cadherins. In contrast to desmoplakin-plakoglobin interactions, the interaction between desmoplakin and plakophilin-1 was not mediated by the armadillo repeat domain of plakophilin-1 but by the non-armadillo head domain, as assessed by yeast two-hybrid and recruitment assays. We propose a model whereby plakoglobin serves as a linker between the cadherins and desmoplakin, whereas plakophilin-1 enhances lateral interactions between desmoplakin molecules. This model suggests that epidermal lesions in patients lacking plakophilin-1 are a consequence of the loss of integrity resulting from a decrease in binding sites for desmoplakin and intermediate filaments at desmosomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)18145-18148
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Volume274
Issue number26
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 25 1999

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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