Girish Mahajan


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Species  Human
Entrez  317
Human  Mouse
Ensembl  ENSG00000120868
Aliases  APAF1, APAF-1, CED4, apoptotic peptidase activating factor 1
External IDs  MGI: 1306796 HomoloGene: 7626 GeneCards: APAF1

Apoptotic protease activating factor 1, also known as APAF1, is a human homolog of C. elegans CED-4 gene.



This gene encodes a cytoplasmic protein that forms one of 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 Procaspase 9 protein, 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.

Alternative splicing results in several transcript variants encoding different isoforms.


APAF1 contains a Greek key motif composed of six helices, a Rossman fold nucleotide binding domains, a short helical motif and a winged-helix domain. It contains a CARD domain with a


APAF1 has been shown to interact with:

  • APIP,
  • BCL2-like 1
  • Caspase-9,
  • HSPA4, and
  • NLRP1.
  • References

    APAF1 Wikipedia

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