Alternative Use of a Mini Exon of the L1 Gene Affects L1 Binding to Neural Ligands

Elena De Angelis, Thomas Brümmendorf, Ling Cheng, Vance Lemmon, Sue Kenwrick

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


Neural cell adhesion molecule L1 is a cell surface glycoprotein required for the correct development of the nervous system. L1 exists as two isoforms encoded by mRNA species that either collectively incorporate or exclude exons 2 and 27. Neurons utilize only the full-length isoform, whereas Schwann cells, kidney cells, and blood lymphocytes only express the short form of L1. Still other cells, oligodendrocytes, regulate L1 isoform expression in a maturation-dependent manner. The RSLE motif encoded by exon 27 is known to have a role in clathrin-mediated endocytosis of L1, but the function of the exon 2-encoded motif (YEGHHV) is unknown. Here we show that this motif is required for the optimal binding of L1 to several neural ligands and is likely to be important for nervous system development. Thus, alternative use of exon 2 is a mechanism for regulating ligand interactions with L1.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)32738-32742
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number35
StatePublished - Aug 31 2001
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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