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A group of proteins involved in the polymerisation of actin that share three so called Formin Homology (FH) domains namely FH1, FH2 and the more loosely defined FH3 domain (Waller & Alberts, 2003).  Other commonly shared domains are a GTPase binding domain (GBD) that bind for example Cdc42 at the N-terminus, and a DAD or Dia-autoregulatory domain, toward the C terminal.


Binding partner Function References
Profilin An actin monomer-binding protein (Watanabe et al, 1997)
Src family kinases    
Kinesin-like proteins    
Table 1
Charles Boone Lab Toronto (Formins & Actin) Fred Chang Lab NewYork (Formins cytoskeleton)


Alberts, A. S. (2001) Identification of a carboxyl-terminal diaphanous-related formin homology protein autoregulated domain.  J.Biol.Chem. 276, 2824-2830.

Carnahan, R. H. & Gould, K. L. (2003) The PCH family protein, Cdc15p, recruits two F-actin nucleation pathways to coordinate cytokinetic actin ring formation in Schizosaccharomyces pombe. J. Cell Biol. 162, 851-862.

Evangelista, M., Pruyne, D., Amberg, D. C., Boone, C. & Bretscher, A. (2001) Formins direct Arp2/3-independent actin filament assembly to polarize cell growth in yeast.  Nature Cell Biol. 4, 32-41.

Evangelista, M., Zigmond, S. & Boone, C. (2003) Formins: signaling effectors for assembly and polarization of actin filaments. J Cell Sci. 116, 2603-2611.

Gasteier, J. E., Madrid, R., Krautkramer, E., Schroder, S., Muranyi, W., Benichou, S. & Fackler, O. T. (2003) Activation of the Rac-binding Partner FHOD1 Induces Actin Stress Fibers via a ROCK-dependent Mechanism. J. Biol. Chem. 278, 38902-38912.

Huckaba, T. M. & Pomn, L. A. (2002) Cytokinesis: Rho and formins are the ringleaders. Curr. Biol. 12, R813-R814.

Kovar, D. R., Kuhn, J. R., Tichy, A. L. & Pollard, T. D. (2003) The fission yeast cytokinesis formin Cdc12p is a barbed end actin filament capping protein gated by profilin. J. Cell Biol. 161, 875-887.

Lew, D. J. (2002) Formin' actin filament bundles. Nature Cell Biol. 4, E29-E30.

Nakano, K., Imai, J., Arai, R., Toh-e, A., Matsui, Y. & Mabuchi, I. (2002) The small GTPase Rho3 and the diaphanous/formin For3 function in polarized cel growth in fission yeast. J Cell Sci. 115, 4629-4639.

O'Rourke, D. A., Liu, Z. X., Sellin, L., Spokes, K., Zeller, R. & Cantley, L. G. (2000) Hepatocyte growth factor induces MAPK-dependent formin IV translocation in renal epithelial cells. J.Am.Soc.Nephrol. 11, 2212-2221.

Petersen, J., Nielsen, O., Egel, R. & Hagan, I. M. (1998) FH3, a domain found in formins, targets the fission yeast Fus1 to the projection Tip during conjugation. J.Cell Biol. 141, 1217-1228.

Sagot, I., Klee, S. K. & Pellman, D. (2002) Yeast formins regulate cell polarity by controlling the assembly of actin cables. Nature Cell Biol. 4, 42-50.

Sawin, K. E. (2002) Cell polarity: Following Formin function. Curr. Biol. 12, R6-R8.

Sutherland, J. D. & Witke, W. (1999) Molecular genetic approaches to understanding the actin cytoskeleton. Curr.Op.Cell Biol. 11, 142-151.

Takeya, R. & Sumimoto, H. (2003) Fhos, a mammalian formin, directly binds to F-actin via a region N-terminal to the FH1 domain and forms a homotypic complex via the FH2 domain to promote actin fiber formation. J Cell Sci. 116, 4567-4575.

Tu, Y., Li, F., Goicoechea, S. & Wu, C. (1999) The LIM-Only Protein PINCH Directly Interacts with Integrin-Linked Kinase and Is Recruited to Integrin-Rich Sites in Spreading Cells. Mol. Cell. Biol. 19, 2425-2434.

Wallar, B. J. & Alberts, A. S. (2003) The formins: active scaffolds that remodel the cytoskeleton. Trends in Cell Biology. 13, 435-446.

Watanabe, N., Madaule, P., Reid, T., Ishizaki, T., Watanabe, G., Kakizuka, A., Saito, Y., Nakao, K., Jockusch, B. M. & Narumiya, S. (1997) p140mDia, a mammalian homolog of Drosophila diaphanous, is a target protein for Rho small GTPas and is a ligand for profilin. EMBO J. 16, 3044-3056.

Westendorf, J. J. (2001) The formin/diaphanous-related protein, FHOS interacts with Rac1 and activates transcription from the serum response element. J.Biol.Chem. 276, 46453-46459.

Wynshaw-Boris, A., Ryan, G., Deng, C. X., Chan, D. C., Jackson-Grusby, L., Larson, D., Dunmore, J. H. & Leder, P. (1997) The role of a single formin isoform in the limb and renal phenotypes of limb deformity. Mol.Med. 6, 372-384.

Yayoshi-Yamamoto, S., Taniuchi, I. & Watanabe, T. (2000) FRL, a novel formin-related protein, binds to rac and regulates cell motility and survival of macrophages. Mol.Cell Biol. 20, 6872-6881.

Zigmond, S. (2004) Formin' adherens junctions, Nature Cell Biol. 6, 12-14.

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