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An 54-58kDa monomeric actin filament bundling protein originally isolated from sea urchin egg but also found in Drosophila (Bryan et al, 1993), vertebrates (Holthius et al, 1994; Edwards & Bryan 1995) including man (Yamashiro- Matsumara & Matsumara, 1985). Fascin (from the latin for bundle) is spaced at 11nm intervals along the filament. The bundles in cross section are seen to be hexagonally packed this and the longnitudinal spacing is compatible with a model (Bryan & Kane, 1978) where fascin cross-links at alternating 4 and 5 actins.  It does seem likely that it may be most closely related to the fimbrin/plastin group since it is, like them, calcium insensitive, monomeric and close in apparent molecular weight.

Fascin binds b-catenin (Tao et al, 1996), a molecule that is not only part of cell-cell adhesion, but is also part of the wnt signalling pathway. It has been proposed that fascin reduces the cytplasmic pool of soluble b-catenin and so would be expected to act as an anti-oncogene. 


Bryan, J., R. Edwards, et al. (1993). “Fascin, an echinoid actin-bundling protein, is a homolog of the Drosophila singed gene product.” Proc.Natl.Acad.Sci.USA  90, 9115-9119.

Bryan, J. & Kane, R.E (1978). "" J.Mol.Biol. 125, 207-224.

Cant, K.,  Knowles, B.A., Mooseker, M.S. & Cooley, L. (1994). “Drosophila singed, a fascin homolog, is required for actin bundle formation during oogenesis and bristle extension.” J.Cell Biol. 125(2), 369-380.

Dickinson, W. J. and J. W. Thatcher (1997). “Morphogenesis of denticles and hairs in Drosophila embryos: Involvement of actin-associated proteins that also affect adult structures.” Cell Mot.Cytoskel. 38, 9-21.

Edwards, R. A., H. Herrera-Sosa, et al. (1995). “Cloning and expression of a murine fascin homolog from mouse brain.” J. Biol. Chem. 270(18), 10764-10770.

Edwards, R. A. and J. Bryan (1995). “Fascins, a family of actin bundling proteins.” Cell Mot. and the Cytoskel. 32, 1-9.

Holthuis, J. C. M., V. T. G. Schoonderwoert, et al. (1994). “A vertebrate homolog of the actin-bundling protein fascin.” Biochim.Biophys.Acta. 1219, 184-188.

Jawhari, A. U., Buda, A., Jenkins, M., Shehzad, K., Sarraf, C., Noda, M., Farthing, M. J. G., Pignatelli, M. & Adams, J. C. (2003) Fascin, an actin-bundling protein , modulates colonic epithelial cell invasiveness and differentiation in vitro., Am J Pathol. 162, 69-80.

Tao, Y.S., Edwards, R.A., Tubb, B., Wang, S. Bryan, J. & McCrea, P.D. (1996). "" J.Cell Biol. 134, 1271-1281.

Tilney, L. G., M. S. Tilney, M.S. & Guild, G.M. (1995). “F actin bundles in Drosophila bristles I. Two filament cross-links are involved in bundling.” J.Cell Biol. 130(3), 629-638.

Yamashiro-Matsumara, S. & Matsumara, F.(1985). "" J.Biol.Chem. 260, 5087-5097.

Yamashiro, S.,  Yamakita, Y., Ono, S. & Matsumura, F.(1998). “Fascin, an actin bundling protein, induces membrane protrusions and increases cell motility of epithelial cells.” Mol.Biol.Cell 9, 993-1006.

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