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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Role of alpha-dystroglycan as a Schwann cell receptor for Mycobacterium leprae.

alpha-Dystroglycan (alpha-DG) is a component of the dystroglycan complex, which is involved in early development and morphogenesis and in the pathogenesis of muscular dystrophies. Here, alpha-DG was shown to serve as a Schwann cell receptor for Mycobacterium leprae, the causative organism of leprosy. Mycobacterium leprae specifically bound to alpha-DG only in the presence of the G domain of the alpha2 chain of laminin-2. Native alpha-DG competitively inhibited the laminin-2-mediated M. leprae binding to primary Schwann cells. Thus, M. leprae may use linkage between the extracellular matrix and cytoskeleton through laminin-2 and alpha-DG for its interaction with Schwann cells.[1]


  1. Role of alpha-dystroglycan as a Schwann cell receptor for Mycobacterium leprae. Rambukkana, A., Yamada, H., Zanazzi, G., Mathus, T., Salzer, J.L., Yurchenco, P.D., Campbell, K.P., Fischetti, V.A. Science (1998) [Pubmed]
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