Institute for Medicine and Engineering Papers

Document Type

Journal Article

Date of this Version

August 2005


Reprinted from Molecular Biology of the Cell, Volume 18, Issue 8, August 2007, pages 3026-38.
Publisher URL: Supplemental materials are located at:


Phosphoinositides regulate several actin-binding proteins but their role at intercellular adhesions has not been defined. We found that phosphatidylinositol 4,5-bisphosphate (PI(4,5)P2) was generated at sites of N-cadherin–mediated intercellular adhesion and was a critical regulator of intercellular adhesion strength. Immunostaining for PI(4,5)P2 or transfection with GFP-PH-PLCδ showed that PI(4,5)P2 was enriched at sites of N-cadherin adhesions and this enrichment required activated Rac1. Isoform-specific immunostaining for type I phosphatidylinositol 4-phosphate 5 kinase (PIP5KI) showed that PIP5KIγ was spatially associated with N-cadherin–Fc beads. Association of PIP5KIγ with N-cadherin adhesions was in part dependent on the activation of RhoA. Transfection with catalytically inactive PIP5KIγ blocked the enrichment of PI(4,5)P2 around beads. Catalytically inactive PIP5KIγ or a cell-permeant peptide that mimics and competes for the PI(4,5)P2-binding region of the actin-binding protein gelsolin inhibited incorporation of actin monomers in response to N-cadherin ligation and reduced intercellular adhesion strength by more than twofold. Gelsolin null fibroblasts transfected with a gelsolin severing mutant containing an intact PI(4,5)P2 binding region, demonstrated intercellular adhesion strength similar to wild-type transfected controls. We conclude that PIP5KIγ-mediated generation of PI(4,5)P2 at sites of N-cadherin contacts regulates intercellular adhesion strength, an effect due in part to PI(4,5)P2-mediated regulation of gelsolin.



Date Posted: 15 January 2008

This document has been peer reviewed.