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Cell adhesion molecules mediate cell-to-cell and cell-to-matrix adhesions and play an immense role in a myriad of physiological processes during the growth and development of a multicellular organism. Cadherins belong to a major group of membrane-bound cell surface proteins that, in coordination with nectins, drive the formation and maintenance of adherens junctions for mediating cell to cell adhesion, cellular communication and signalling. Alongside adhesive function, the involvement of cadherins in mediating host-pathogen interactions has been extensively explored in recent years. In this review, we provide an in-depth understanding of microbial pathogens and their virulence factors that exploit cadherins for their strategical invasion into the host cell. Furthermore, macromolecular interactions involving cadherins and various microbial factors such as secretory toxins and adhesins lead to the disintegration of host cell junctions followed by the entry of the pathogen or triggering downstream signalling pathways responsible for successful invasion of the pathogenic microbes are discussed. Besides providing a comprehensive insight into some of the structural complexes involving cadherins and microbial factors to offer the mechanistic details of host-pathogen interactions, the current review also highlights novel constituents of various cell signalling events such as endocytosis machinery elicited upon microbial infections. © 2021 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


Sagarika Dash, Kheerthana Duraivelan, Dibyendu Samanta. Cadherin-mediated host-pathogen interactions. Cellular microbiology. 2021 May;23(5):e13316

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PMID: 33543826

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