At least seven isoforms comprise the highly conserved 14-3-3 family of homo- and heterodimeric proteins that are abundantly expressed in all eukaryotic cells. Although more than seven isoforms of 14-3-3 have been described, some redundancies have appeared upon sequencing. The 14-3-3s are thought to be key regulators of signal transduction events mediated through their binding to serine-phosphorylated proteins. By interacting with Cdc25C, 14-3-3 regulates entry into the cell cycle and, through interaction with Bad, prevents apoptosis. Other proteins that have been shown to bind to 14-3-3s include members of the protein kinase C family, Cbl, IRS-1, polyoma middle-T antigen, nitrate reductase, S-raf and the IGF-1 receptor. Detection of 14-3-3 proteins in cerebrospinal fluid has been shown to be quite useful in the differential diagnosis of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease and other prion diseases.
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