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Voltage-gated sodium channels are concentrated in myelinated nerves at the nodes of Ranvier flanked by paranodal axoglial junctions. Establishment of these essential nodal and paranodal domains is determined by myelin-forming glia, but the mechanisms are not clear. Here, we show that two isoforms of Neurofascin, Nfasc155 in glia and Nfasc186 in neurons, are(More)
Dystroglycan is a central component of the dystrophin-glycoprotein complex implicated in the pathogenesis of several neuromuscular diseases. Although dystroglycan is expressed by Schwann cells, its normal peripheral nerve functions are unknown. Here we show that selective deletion of Schwann cell dystroglycan results in slowed nerve conduction and nodal(More)
Two major isoforms of the cell adhesion molecule neurofascin NF186 and NF155 are expressed in the central nervous system (CNS). We have investigated their roles in the assembly of the node of Ranvier and show that they are targeted to distinct domains at the node. At the onset of myelination, NF186 is restricted to neurons, whereas NF155 localizes to(More)
Rapid nerve impulse conduction in myelinated axons requires the concentration of voltage-gated sodium channels at nodes of Ranvier. Myelin-forming oligodendrocytes in the central nervous system (CNS) induce the clustering of sodium channels into nodal complexes flanked by paranodal axoglial junctions. However, the molecular mechanisms for nodal complex(More)
Previous studies (Blank, W. F., M. B. Bunge, and R. P. Bunge. 1974. Brain Res. 67:503-518) showed that Schwann cell paranodal membranes were disrupted in calcium free medium suggesting that cadherin mediated mechanisms may operate to maintain the integrity of the paranodal membrane complex. Using antibodies against the fifth extracellular domain of(More)
Nerve impulses are propagated at nodes of Ranvier in the myelinated nerves of vertebrates. Internodal distances have been proposed to affect the velocity of nerve impulse conduction; however, direct evidence is lacking, and the cellular mechanisms that might regulate the length of the myelinated segments are unknown. Ramón y Cajal described longitudinal and(More)
The Prx gene in Schwann cells encodes L- and S-periaxin, two abundant PDZ domain proteins thought to have a role in the stabilization of myelin in the peripheral nervous system (PNS). Mice lacking a functional Prx gene assemble compact PNS myelin. However, the sheath is unstable, leading to demyelination and reflex behaviors that are associated with the(More)
We report the cloning and subcellular localization of a novel Schwann cell-specific protein of 147 kd that we have named periaxin. Periaxin has a remarkable domain of repetitive pentameric units in the primary sequence. It is expressed in the first uncompacted whorls of membrane that ensheathe the axon, and further synthesis of the protein in the rat(More)
The evolution of complex nervous systems in vertebrates has been accompanied by, and probably dependent on, the acquisition of the myelin sheath. Although there has been substantial progress in our understanding of the factors that determine glial cell fate, much less is known about the cellular mechanisms that determine how the myelin sheath is extended(More)
Periaxin is a newly described protein that is expressed exclusively by myelinating Schwann cells. In developing nerves, periaxin is first detected as Schwann cells ensheathe axons, prior to the appearance of the proteins that characterize the myelin sheath. Periaxin is initially concentrated in the adaxonal membrane (apposing the axon) but, during(More)