PATJ connects and stabilizes apical and lateral components of tight junctions in human intestinal cells

Michel D, Arsanto JP, Massey-Harroche D, Beclin C, Wijnholds J and Le Bivic A
Source: J Cell Sci
Publication Date: (2005)
Issue: 118(Pt 17): 4049-4057
Research Area:
Cancer Research/Cell Biology
Cells used in publication:
Species: human
Tissue Origin: colon
Nucleofector® I/II/2b
The Crumbs complex that also contains the cortical proteins Stardust and DPATJ (a homologue of PATJ), is crucial for the building of epithelial monolayers in Drosophila. Although loss of function of the Crumbs or Stardust genes prevents the stabilization of a belt of adherens junctions at the apico-lateral border of the cells, no phenotype has been described for the Dpatj gene and its role in epithelial morphogenesis and polarity remains unknown. We have produced downregulated PATJ stable lines of Caco2 to clarify its role in epithelial morphogenesis. In PATJ knockdown cells, Pals1 (a Stardust homologue) is no longer associated with tight junctions whereas Crumbs3 (Crb3) is accumulated into a compartment spatially close to the apical membrane and related to early endosomes. Furthermore, occludin and ZO-3, two proteins of tight junctions are mislocalized on the lateral membrane indicating that PATJ plays a novel role in the building of tight junctions by providing a link between their lateral and apical components. Thus, PATJ stabilizes the Crb3 complex and regulates the spatial concentration of several components at the border between the apical and lateral domains.