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Biochem J. 2002 Aug 15;366(Pt 1):1-13.

Role of synaptotagmin in Ca2+-triggered exocytosis.

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Department of Physiology, SMI 129, University of Wisconsin, 1300 University Avenue, Madison, WI 53706, U.S.A.


The Ca(2+)-binding synaptic-vesicle protein synaptotagmin I has attracted considerable interest as a potential Ca(2+) sensor that regulates exocytosis from neurons and neuroendocrine cells. Recent studies have shed new light on the structure, biochemical/biophysical properties and function of synaptotagmin, and the emerging view is that it plays an important role in both exocytosis and endocytosis. At least a dozen additional isoforms exist, some of which are expressed outside of the nervous system, suggesting that synaptotagmins might regulate membrane traffic in a variety of cell types. Here we provide an overview of the members of this gene family, with particular emphasis on the question of whether and how synaptotagmin I functions during the final stages of membrane fusion: does it regulate the Ca(2+)-triggered opening and dilation of fusion pores?

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