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Protein BCL2L2 PDB 1mk3.png
Available structures
PDBOrtholog search: PDBe RCSB
AliasesBCL2L2, BCL-W, BCL2-L-2, BCLW, PPP1R51, BCL2 like 2
External IDsOMIM: 601931 MGI: 108052 HomoloGene: 2989 GeneCards: BCL2L2
RefSeq (mRNA)



RefSeq (protein)



Location (UCSC)Chr 14: 23.3 – 23.31 Mbn/a
PubMed search[2][3]
View/Edit HumanView/Edit Mouse

Bcl-2-like protein 2 is a 193-amino acid protein that in humans is encoded by the BCL2L2 gene on chromosome 14 (band q11.2-q12).[4][5][6] It was originally discovered by Leonie Gibson, Suzanne Cory and colleagues at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research, who called it Bcl-w.[7]


This gene encodes a pro-survival (anti-apoptotic) member of the bcl-2 protein family, and is most similar to Bcl-xL.[6] The proteins of this family form hetero- or homodimers and act as anti- and pro-apoptotic regulators. Expression of this gene in cells has been shown to contribute to reduced cell apoptosis under cytotoxic conditions. Studies of the related gene in mice indicated a role in the survival of NGF- and BDNF-dependent neurons. Mutation and knockout studies of the mouse gene demonstrated an essential role in adult spermatogenesis.[5][8][6]

Clinical significance[edit]

High levels of Bcl-w are seen in many cancers, including glioblastoma, colorectal cancer, non-small-cell lung carcinoma, and breast cancer.[6] Breast cancer patients with metastasis have higher Bcl-w than breast cancer patients only having primary tumor.[6] Elevated levels of Bcl-w has been shown to protect neurons from cell death induced by amyloid beta.[6] Parkinson's disease patients with a mutant PARK2 gene have elevated Bcl-w.[6] Bcl-w has been shown to contribute to cellular senescence.[6]

Quercetin has been shown to inhibit the PI3K/AKT pathway leading to downregulation of Bcl-w.[9][6]


BCL2L2 has been shown to interact with:


  1. ^ a b c GRCh38: Ensembl release 89: ENSG00000129473 - Ensembl, May 2017
  2. ^ "Human PubMed Reference:". National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine.
  3. ^ "Mouse PubMed Reference:". National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine.
  4. ^ Gibson L, Holmgreen SP, Huang DC, Bernard O, Copeland NG, Jenkins NA, Sutherland GR, Baker E, Adams JM, Cory S (October 1996). "bcl-w, a novel member of the bcl-2 family, promotes cell survival". Oncogene. 13 (4): 665–75. PMID 8761287.
  5. ^ a b "Entrez Gene: BCL2L2 BCL2-like 2".
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i Hartman ML, Czyz M (2020). "BCL-w: apoptotic and non-apoptotic role in health and disease". Cell Death & Disease. 11 (4): 2260. doi:10.1038/s41419-020-2417-0. PMC 7174325. PMID 32317622.
  7. ^ Gibson L, Holmgreen SP, Huang DC, et al. (1996). "bcl-w, a novel member of the bcl-2 family, promotes cell survival". Oncogene. 13 (4): 665–75. PMID 8761287.
  8. ^ Kelly, Gemma L.; Strasser, Andreas (2020). "Toward Targeting Antiapoptotic MCL-1 for Cancer Therapy". Annual Review of Cancer Biology. 4: 299–313. doi:10.1146/annurev-cancerbio-030419-033510.
  9. ^ Paez-Ribes M, González-Gualda E, Doherty GJ, Muñoz-Espín D (2019). "Targeting senescent cells in translational medicine". EMBO Molecular Medicine. 11 (12): e10234. doi:10.15252/emmm.201810234. PMC 6895604. PMID 31746100.
  10. ^ Hsu SY, Lin P, Hsueh AJ (September 1998). "BOD (Bcl-2-related ovarian death gene) is an ovarian BH3 domain-containing proapoptotic Bcl-2 protein capable of dimerization with diverse antiapoptotic Bcl-2 members". Mol. Endocrinol. 12 (9): 1432–40. doi:10.1210/mend.12.9.0166. PMID 9731710.
  11. ^ O'Connor L, Strasser A, O'Reilly LA, Hausmann G, Adams JM, Cory S, Huang DC (January 1998). "Bim: a novel member of the Bcl-2 family that promotes apoptosis". EMBO J. 17 (2): 384–95. doi:10.1093/emboj/17.2.384. PMC 1170389. PMID 9430630.
  12. ^ a b Ayllón V, Cayla X, García A, Fleischer A, Rebollo A (July 2002). "The anti-apoptotic molecules Bcl-xL and Bcl-w target protein phosphatase 1alpha to Bad". Eur. J. Immunol. 32 (7): 1847–55. doi:10.1002/1521-4141(200207)32:7<1847::AID-IMMU1847>3.0.CO;2-7. PMID 12115603.
  13. ^ Chen L, Willis SN, Wei A, Smith BJ, Fletcher JI, Hinds MG, Colman PM, Day CL, Adams JM, Huang DC (February 2005). "Differential targeting of prosurvival Bcl-2 proteins by their BH3-only ligands allows complementary apoptotic function". Mol. Cell. 17 (3): 393–403. doi:10.1016/j.molcel.2004.12.030. PMID 15694340.
  14. ^ Bae J, Hsu SY, Leo CP, Zell K, Hsueh AJ (October 2001). "Underphosphorylated BAD interacts with diverse antiapoptotic Bcl-2 family proteins to regulate apoptosis". Apoptosis. 6 (5): 319–30. doi:10.1023/A:1011319901057. PMID 11483855. S2CID 23119757.
  15. ^ Holmgreen SP, Huang DC, Adams JM, Cory S (June 1999). "Survival activity of Bcl-2 homologs Bcl-w and A1 only partially correlates with their ability to bind pro-apoptotic family members". Cell Death Differ. 6 (6): 525–32. doi:10.1038/sj.cdd.4400519. PMID 10381646.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]