Here we describe a novel small polypeptide expressed in chick embryo and mouse adult tissues referred to as Rolly Protein (Rolp), expressed at the highest levels in tibial cartilage and lung respectively. Investigating its putative role in cartilage differentiation we found that its expression is restricted to proliferative stages consistently with a decreased proliferation rate observed in Rolp-silenced cells. Additional functional studies demonstrate that inhibition of Rolp expression causes a transcription modulation of genes involved in apoptosis. The results here provided strongly suggest an active role of Rolp in the control of cell proliferation and apoptosis.
- Leucine zipper
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