Structural basis of cell-cell adhesion by NCAM.
Kasper C., Rasmussen H., Kastrup JS., Ikemizu S., Jones EY., Berezin V., Bock E., Larsen IK.
The neural cell adhesion molecule NCAM, a member of the immunoglobulin superfamily, mediates cell-cell recognition and adhesion via a homophilic interaction. NCAM plays a key role during development and regeneration of the nervous system and is involved in synaptic plasticity associated with memory and learning. The 1.85 A crystal structure of the two N-terminal extracellular domains of NCAM reported here provides a structural basis for the homophilic interaction. The molecular packing of the two-domain structure reveals a cross shaped antiparallel dimer, and provides fundamental insight into trans-cellular recognition mediated by NCAM.