Bcl-2 Antibodies And Apoptosis Research

Mon, 12/14/2009 - 10:00

Bcl-2 antibodies are used as markers for the Bcl-2 gene. Bcl-2 suppresses apoptosis (controlled cell death) by inhibiting caspase activity and controlling cell membrane permeability. It does this by forming mitochondrial pores on the outer membrane of the mitochondria. However, its exact mechanism of action is still not completely understood.

There are more than 25 Bcl-2 proteins, which are membrane bound and regulate apoptosis both positively and negatively. We at Novus Biologicals have a broad antibody database specific to the Bcl-2 gene, as well as anti-Bax antibodies. These two proteins are closely related, as Bax is a pro-apoptotic protein of the Bcl-2 family, forming channels in lipid membranes.

In planar lipid bilayer experiments, Bax formed ion-conducting channels which were both voltage and pH dependent. Further studies used Bax to trigger the release of liposome-encapsulated carboxyfluorescein at both acidic and neutral pH. This release could be blocked by Bcl-2 at neutral pH.

Flow Cytometry: Bcl2 Antibody Flow Cytometry: Bcl2 Antibody

However, when antibody assays were repeated using Bcl-2 as the release agent, the protein was effective only in an acidic environment. Taken together, these studies indicate that Bax pro-apoptotic effects might be channeled through pore formation, which is antagonized by Bcl-2.

Recently, more studies have been performed using anti-Bcl-2 antibodies, in an effort to further understand Bcl-2 pore formation. Although its mechanism of action is well documented, it is still uncertain whether the mitochondrial pores which form are monomeric (composed of single molecules) or oligomeric (composed of 2 - 5 monomer units.) Studies indicate that Bcl-2 pores expand relative to the concentration of Bcl-2 present, indicating that oligomers are more likely. Bcl-2 pores are much smaller than Bax pores, suggesting that Bcl-2 is, in fact, a defective Bax gene.

Novus Biologicals offers many Bcl-2 reagents for your research needs including:

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