|Hamster, Human, Monkey, Mouse, Rat|
Background: Actin, a ubiquitous eukaryotic protein, is the major component of the cytoskeleton. At least six isoforms are known in mammals. Nonmuscle β- and γ-actin, also known as cytoplasmic actin, are predominantly expressed in nonmuscle cells, controlling cell structure and motility (1). α-cardiac and α-skeletal actin are expressed in striated cardiac and skeletal muscles, respectively; two smooth muscle actins, α- and γ-actin, are found primarily in vascular smooth muscle and enteric smooth muscle, respectively. These actin isoforms regulate the contractile potential of muscle cells (1). Actin exists mainly as a fibrous polymer, F-actin. In response to cytoskeletal reorganizing signals during processes such as cytokinesis, endocytosis, or stress, cofilin promotes fragmentation and depolymerization of F-actin, resulting in an increase in the monomeric globular form, G-actin (2). The ARP2/3 complex stabilizes F-actin fragments and promotes formation of new actin filaments (2). Research studies have shown that actin is hyperphosphorylated in primary breast tumors (3). Cleavage of actin under apoptotic conditions has been observed in vitro and in cardiac and skeletal muscle, as shown in research studies (4-6). Actin cleavage by caspase-3 may accelerate ubiquitin/proteasome-dependent muscle proteolysis (6).
Background: α-Synuclein is a protein of 140-amino acids expressed abundantly in the brain. α-Synuclein is also the main component of pathogenic Lewy bodies and Lewy neurites. Research studies have shown that mutations of the α-synuclein gene are linked to Parkinson's disease (1).