Brain protein 4.1 subtypes: A working hypothesis

Keith E. Krebs, Ian S. Zagon, Ram Sihag, Steven R. Goodman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

8 Scopus citations


In a companion review1 we discussed the data supporting the conclusion that at least two subtypes of spectrin exist in mammalian brain. One form is found in the cell bodies, dendrites, and post‐synaptic terminals of neurons (brain spectrin(240/235E)) and the other subtype is located in the axons and presynaptic terminals (brain spectrin(240/235)). Our recent understanding of brain spectrin subtype localization suggests a possible explanation for a conundrum concerning brain 4.1 localization. Amelin, an immunoreactive analogue of red blood cell (rbc) cytoskeletal protein 4.1, is localized in neuronal cell bodies and dendrites when brain sections are stained with antibody against rbc protein 4.1. However, it has recently been suggested that synapsin I, a neuron‐specific phosphoprotein associated with the cytoplasmic surface of small synaptic vesicles, is related to erythrocyte 4.1. In this review we hypothesize that there are at least two forms of brain 4.1: a cell body/dendritic form (amelin) which is detected with rbc protein 4.1 antibody, and a unique form found exclusively in the presynaptic terminal (synapsin I). The binding of synapsin I to brain spectrin(240/235), and its ability to stimulate the spectrin/F‐actin interaction in a phosphorylation‐dependent manner suggests a model for the regulation of synaptic transmission mediated by the neuronal cytoskeleton.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)274-279
Number of pages6
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 1987

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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