Department of chemistry
The University of British Columbia
Faculty in University of British Columbia
Actin (View 3hbt) is involved in several aspects of maintaining the circulation of blood, from its contractile function in cardiac and vascular muscles to its role in the motility of white blood cells. Gelsolin is found in circulating cells such as platelets and macrophages. It is a regulator of actin filament assembly and disassembly. Its actin-binding ability is sensitive to and may be regulated by variations in levels of calcium ions or phosphatidyl inositol metabolites. Gelsolin in plasma prevents viscosity-related problems that would occur should cellular stores of actin be released into the circulation as a result of cell death due to injury or disease. The vitamin D binding and carrier protein (DBP) in plasma also aids in clearance of actin from the circulation.