Desmosomes are cell-cell junctions between epithelial, myocardial and certain other cell types. Desmoglein 1 is a calcium-binding transmembrane glycoprotein component of desmosomes in vertebrate epithelial cells. Currently, three desmoglein subfamily members have been identified and all are members of the cadherin cell adhesion molecule superfamily. These desmoglein gene family members are located in a cluster on chromosome 18. The protein encoded by this gene has been identified as the autoantigen of the autoimmune skin blistering disease pemphigus foliaceus.