The Neural Cell Adhesion Molecule NCAM and Lipid Rafts

  • Gro Klitgaard PovlsenEmail author
  • Dorte Kornerup Ditlevsen
Part of the Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology book series (AEMB, volume 663)


Detergent-resistant membrane microdomains, the so-called lipid rafts, are involved in a wide array of cellular processes including membrane trafficking and intracellular signalling. In connection with the increased interest in lipid rafts, these structures have been reported in a number of studies to be of critical importance for signalling processes mediated by the neural cell adhesion molecule (NCAM). NCAM interacts with and induces signalling via transmembrane and intracellular interaction partners such as the FGF receptor, Fyn kinase, and protein kinase C. Moreover, NCAM interacts with cytoplasmic components and linkers such as spectrin and growth associated protein-43.

In this chapter, we discuss the increasing number of studies on the importance of lipid rafts for the interactions of NCAM with both signalling and cytoskeletal components. We conclude that each of the three major NCAM isoforms engage in distinct membrane proximal complexes with signalling molecules and cytoskeletal components. The segregation of different NCAM interaction partners into functionally and physically distinct membrane microdomains is a major determinant of the specificity of these NCAM-associated complexes.


Neural cell adhesion molecule Lipid rafts Signalling complexes Cytoskeleton 


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gro Klitgaard Povlsen
    • 1
    Email author
  • Dorte Kornerup Ditlevsen
  1. 1.ENKAM PharmaceuticalsCopenhagen ØDenmark

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