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Int J Biochem Mol Biol. 2011;2(1):47-57. Epub 2010 Dec 25.

Heat shock protein 10 (Hsp10) in immune-related diseases: one coin, two sides.


Heat shock protein 10 (Hsp10) in eukaryotes, originally identified as a mitochondrial chaperone, now is also known to be present in cytosol, cell surface, extracellular space and peripheral blood. Functionally besides participating in mitochondrial protein folding in association with Hsp60, Hsp10 appears to be related to pregnancy, cancer and autoimmune inhibition. Hsp10 can be released to peripheral blood at very early time point of pregnancy and given another name called early pregnancy factor (EPF), which seems to play a critical role in developing a pregnant niche. In malignant disorders, Hsp10 is usually abnormally expressed in the cytosol of malignant cells and further released to extracellular space, resulting in tumor-promoting effect from various aspects. Furthermore, distinct from other heat shock protein members, whose soluble form is recognized as danger signal by immune cells and triggers immune responses, Hsp10 after release, however, is designed to be an inhibitory signal by limiting immune response. This review discusses how Hsp10 participates in various physiological and pathological processes from basic protein molecule folding to pregnancy, cancer and autoimmune diseases, and emphasizes how important the location is for the function exertion of a molecule.

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