The protein encoded by this gene is a member of the SWI/SNF family of proteins. Members of this family have helicase and ATPase activities and are thought to regulate transcription of certain genes by altering the chromatin structure around those genes. The SMARCAL1 protein convert RPA-bound, single stranded DNA into double-stranded DNA, an enzyme activity termed "annealing helicase".
The encoded protein shows sequence similarity to the E. coliRNA polymerase-binding protein HepA. Mutations in this gene are a cause of Schimke immunoosseous dysplasia (SIOD), an autosomal recessive disorder with the diagnostic features of spondyloepiphyseal dysplasia, renal dysfunction, and T-cell immunodeficiency.
^Muthuswami R, Truman PA, Mesner LD, Hockensmith JW (Mar 2000). "A eukaryotic SWI2/SNF2 domain, an exquisite detector of double-stranded to single-stranded DNA transition elements". The Journal of Biological Chemistry. 275 (11): 7648–55. doi:10.1074/jbc.275.11.7648. PMID10713074.
^Coleman MA, Eisen JA, Mohrenweiser HW (May 2000). "Cloning and characterization of HARP/SMARCAL1: a prokaryotic HepA-related SNF2 helicase protein from human and mouse". Genomics. 65 (3): 274–82. doi:10.1006/geno.2000.6174. PMID10857751.
Bökenkamp A, deJong M, van Wijk JA, Block D, van Hagen JM, Ludwig M (Dec 2005). "R561C missense mutation in the SMARCAL1 gene associated with mild Schimke immuno-osseous dysplasia". Pediatric Nephrology. 20 (12): 1724–8. doi:10.1007/s00467-005-2047-x. PMID16237566.