Cadherins, Ca2+-dependent adhesion molecules, are crucial for cell-cell junctions and remodeling. Cadherins form inter-junctional lattices by the formation of both cis and trans dimers. Here, we directly visualize and quantify the spatiotemporal dynamics of wild-type and dimer mutant N-cadherin interactions using time-lapse imaging of junction assembly, disassembly and a FRET reporter to assess Ca2+-dependent interactions. A trans dimer mutant (W2A) and a cis mutant (V81D/V174D) exhibited an increased Ca 2+-sensitivity for the disassembly of trans dimers compared to the WT, while another mutant (R14E) was insensitive to Ca2+-chelation. Time-lapse imaging of junction assembly and disassembly, monitored in 2D and 3D (using cellular spheroids), revealed kinetic differences in the different mutants as well as different behaviors in the 2D and 3D environment. Taken together, these data provide new insights into the role that the cis and trans dimers play in the dynamic interactions of cadherins. © 2013 Bunse et al.
Bunse, S., Garg, S., Junek, S., Vogel, D., Ansari, N., Stelzer, E. H. K., & Schuman, E. (2013). Role of N-cadherin cis and trans interfaces in the dynamics of adherens junctions in living cells. PLoS ONE, 8(12). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0081517