Mitochondrial Carrier Homolog 2: A Clue to Cracking the BCL-2 Family Riddle?
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BCL-2 family members are pivotal regulators of the apoptotic process. Mitochondria are a major site-of-action for these proteins. Several prominent alterations occur to mitochondria during apoptosis that seem to be part of the “mitochondrial apoptotic program.” The BCL-2 family members are believed to be the major regulators of this program, however their exact mechanism of action still remains a mystery. BID, a pro-apoptotic BCL-2 family member plays an essential role in initiating this program. Recently, we have revealed that in apoptotic cells the activated/truncated form of BID, tBID, interacts with a novel, uncharacterized protein named mitochondrial carrier homolog 2 (Mtch2). Mtch2 is a conserved protein that is similar to members of the mitochondrial carrier protein (MCP) family. This review summarizes the current knowledge regarding BCL-2 family members and the mitochondrial apoptotic program and examines the possible involvement of Mtch2 in this program.
KeywordsBID mitochondrial carrier homolog 2 BH3-only proteins BCL-2family members mitochondrial carrier proteins mitochondria apoptosis
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