Conserved Site

Cadherin conserved site (IPR020894)

Short name: Cadherin_CS


Cadherins are a group of transmembrane proteins that serve as the major adhesion molecules located within adherens junctions. They can regulate cell-cell adhesion through their extracellular domain and their cytosolic domains connect to the actin cytoskeleton by binding to catenins [PMID: 25014356]. They may play an important role in the sorting of different cell types during morphogenesis, histogenesis and regeneration. They may also be involved in the regulation of tight and gap junctions, and in the control of intercellular spacing. Cadherins are evolutionary related to the desmogleins which are component of intercellular desmosome junctions involved in the interaction of plaque proteins.

Structurally, cadherins comprise a number of domains: classically, these include a signal sequence; a propeptide of around 130 residues; a single transmembrane domain and five tandemly repeated extracellular cadherin domains, 4 of which are cadherin repeats, and the fifth contains 4 conserved cysteines and a N-terminal cytoplasmic domain [PMID: 11736639]. However, proteins are designated as members of the broadly defined cadherin family if they have one or more cadherin repeats. A cadherin repeat is an independently folding sequence of approximately 110 amino acids that contains motifs with the conserved sequences DRE, DXNDNAPXF, and DXD. Crystal structures have revealed that multiple cadherin domains form Ca2+-dependent rod-like structures with a conserved Ca2+-binding pocket at the domain-domain interface. Cadherins depend on calcium for their function: calcium ions bind to specific residues in each cadherin repeat to ensure its proper folding, to confer rigidity upon the extracellular domain and is essential for cadherin adhesive function and for protection against protease digestion.

GO terms

Biological Process

GO:0007155 cell adhesion

Molecular Function

No terms assigned in this category.

Cellular Component

GO:0005886 plasma membrane

Contributing signatures

Signatures from InterPro member databases are used to construct an entry.
PROSITE patterns