Cadherin molecules overlying a desomosome – mitochondrial tethering

I don’t know much about desmosomes, but they do make unique junctions with nuclear pore intermediate filaments and also very definite connections with mitochondria. The mitochondria – intermediate filament connections with desmosomes show a couple nice ultrastructural changes from the routine: 1) the mitochondrial outer membrane is flattened, or straightened in the area of connection with the intermediate filaments over the desmosome, and it is also a little darker. and 2) the mitochondrial body itself is drawn towards (at least that is the way it looks… as if there was a dragging force) the desmosomal intermediate filaments. The central line of the desmosome is not always visible when i see these tethers (often with two mitochondria in adjacent cells and a single desmosome, but there are molecular models of the cadherins (several) that I cut pasted masked and reduced to fit in the appropriate intercellular space where they would appear. It is a good lesson is relative “size” and “shape”.

Micrograph: Pale green semitransparent mask is over two mitochondria, one each in two adjacent cells. Red arrow points to the inner dense layer (maybe i will add the known proteins there “in scale), the white arrows point to the plasmalemma of the two separate cells, the black arrow points to the center dense “knotted” region, (maybe i will measure distances between visible knots) and the molecules (several taken from the internet, look similar and were pasted into the intercellular region (see demarcation from right hand side transparent grey.