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Curr Opin Cell Biol. 1993 Feb;5(1):48-55.

Actin isoforms.

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  • 1Program in Cell, Molecular and Developmental Biology, Tufts University Health Science Schools, Boston, Massachusetts 02111.


The actin supergene family encodes a number of structurally related, but perhaps functionally distinct, protein isoforms that regulate contractile potential in muscle tissues and help to control the shape as well as the motility of non-muscle cells. In spite of the documented conservation amongst isoactin genes and their encoded proteins, recent results of biochemical, antibody localization, molecular mutagenesis and isoactin gene replacement studies lend credence to the notion that functional differences amongst muscle and non-muscle actin isoforms exist. Furthermore, the discovery of a new class of actin isoforms, the actin-related proteins, reveals that the actin gene and protein isoform family is more complex than was previously believed.

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