This gene encodes a family member of actin-related proteins (ARPs), which share significant amino acid sequence identity to conventional actins. Both actins and ARPs have an actin fold, which is an ATP-binding cleft, as a common feature. The ARPs are involved in diverse cellular processes, including vesicular transport, spindle orientation, nuclear migration and chromatin remodeling. This gene encodes a 53 kDa subunit protein of the BAF (BRG1/brm-associated factor) complex in mammals, which is functionally related to SWI/SNF complex in S. cerevisiae and Drosophila; the latter is thought to facilitate transcriptional activation of specific genes by antagonizing chromatin-mediated transcriptional repression. Together with beta-actin, it is required for maximal ATPase activity of BRG1, and for the association of the BAF complex with chromatin/matrix. Three transcript variants that encode two different protein isoforms have been described.
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