By Western blot, two bands are detected in rat cerebellum homogenate: a prominent band at 50 kDa corresponding to rodent GFAP and a lower band at ~45 kDa that most likely represents a proteolytic fragment derived from the GFAP molecule.
GFAP (Glial fibrillary acidic protein) is a member of the class III intermediate filament protein family. GFAP is heavily, and specifically, expressed in astrocytes and certain astroglia in the central nervous system, in satellite cells in peripheral ganglia, and in non-myelinating Schwann cells in peripheral nerves. In addition, neural stem cells strongly express GFAP. Antibodies to GFAP are very useful as markers of astrocytic cells. In addition, many types of brain tumor, presumably derived from astrocytic cells, heavily express GFAP. GFAP is also found in the lens epithelium, Kupffer cells of the liver, in some cells in salivary tumors and has been reported in erythrocytes. GFAP is used as a marker to distinguish astrocytes from other glial cells during development. Mutations in this gene cause Alexander disease, a rare disorder of astrocytes in the central nervous system. Alternative splicing of the GFAP gene results in multiple transcript variants encoding distinct isoforms.
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Protein Aliases: FLJ45472; GFAP; Glial fibrillary acidic protein; glial fibrillary acidic protein alpha; intermediate filament; intermediate filament protein
Gene Aliases: AI836096; ALXDRD; BOS_19250; GFAP