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GAPDH: A common enzyme with uncommon functions

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Summary

1. Glyceraldehyde‐3‐phosphate dehydrogenase (GAPDH) has long been recognized as an important enzyme for energy metabolism and the production of ATP and pyruvate through anaerobic glycolysis in the cytoplasm.

2. Recent studies have shown that GAPDH has multiple functions independent of its role in energy metabolism. Although increased GAPDH gene expression and enzymatic function is associated with cell proliferation and tumourigenesis, conditions such as oxidative stress impair GAPDH catalytic activity and lead to cellular aging and apoptosis.

3. The mechanism(s) underlying the effects of GAPDH on cellular proliferation remains unclear, yet much evidence has been accrued that demonstrates a variety of interacting partners for GAPDH, including proteins, various RNA species and telomeric DNA.

4. The present mini review summarizes recent findings relating to the extraglycolytic functions of GAPDH and highlights the significant role this enzyme plays in regulating both cell survival and apoptotic death.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Molecular Signalling Laboratory, Murdoch Childrens Research Institute

Publication date: August 1, 2012

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