Apoptotic protease activating factor 1, also known as APAF1, is a human homolog of C. elegans CED-4 gene.APAF-1 and CED-4 homologs have been found in all currently sequenced animal genomes.
This gene encodes a cytoplasmic protein that forms one the central hubs in the apoptosis regulatory network. This protein contains (from the N terminal) a caspase recruitment domain (CARD), an ATPase domain (NB-ARC), few short helical domains and then several copies of the WD40 repeat domain. Upon binding cytochrome c and dATP, this protein forms an oligomeric apoptosome. The apoptosome binds and cleaves caspase 9 preproprotein, releasing its mature, activated form. The precise mechanism for this reaction is still debated though work published by Guy Salvesen suggests that the apoptosome may induce caspase 9 dimerization and subsequent autocatalysis. Activated caspase 9 stimulates the subsequent caspase cascade that commits the cell to apoptosis.
Storage: Store at -20 °C for one year. Avoid repeated freeze/thaw cycles.