Functional properties of human vascular endothelial cadherin (7B4/cadherin-5), an endothelium-specific cadherin

F. Breviario, L. Caveda, M. Corada, I. Martin-Padura, P. Navarro, J. Golay, M. Introna, D. Gulino, M. G. Lampugnani, E. Dejana

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Human vascular endothelial cadherin (VE-cadherin, 7B4/cadherin-5) is an endothelial-specific cadherin localized at the intercellular junctions. To directly investigate the functional role of this molecule we cloned the full- length cDNA from human endothelial cells and transfected its coding region into Chinese hamster ovary cells. The product of the transfected cDNA had the same molecular weight as the natural VE-cadherin in human endothelial cells, and reacted with several VE-cadherin mouse monoclonal antibodies. Furthermore, it selectively concentrated at intercellular junctions, where it codistributed with α-catenin. VE-cadherin conferred adhesive properties to transfected cells. It mediated homophilic, calcium-dependent aggregation and cell-to-cell adhesion. In addition, it decreased intercellular permeability to high-molecular weight molecules and reduced cell migration rate across a wounded area. Thus, VE-cadherin may exert a relevant role in endothelial cell biology through control of the cohesion and organization of the intercellular junctions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1229-1239
Number of pages11
JournalArteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 1995


  • cadherin
  • endothelium
  • transfection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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