EF-hand, calcium binding motif, found in homologs of mammalian apoptosis-linked gene 2 protein (ALG-2)
The family includes some homologs of mammalian apoptosis-linked gene 2 protein (ALG-2) mainly found in lower eukaryotes, such as a parasitic protist Leishmarua major and a cellular slime mold Dictyostelium discoideum. These homologs contains five EF-hand motifs. Due to the presence of unfavorable residues at the Ca2+-coordinating positions, their non-canonical EF4 and EF5 hands may not bind Ca2+. Two Dictyostelium PEF proteins are the prototypes of this family. They may bind to cytoskeletal proteins and/or signal-transducing proteins localized to detergent-resistant membranes named lipid rafts, and occur as monomers or weak homo- or heterodimers like ALG-2. They can serve as a mediator for Ca2+ signaling-related Dictyostehum programmed cell death (PCD).