chapter  5
Other important domains
5.1 The Bcl-2 motif family
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As mentioned before, the structure of the Bcl-2 family is monolithic and does not contain domains. It consists of two central hydrophobic helices, which are sur­ rounded by several amphipathic helices carrying the BH motifs. Of particular interest is a structure of the antiapoptotic Bcl-xL protein in complex with the BH3 motif of the proapoptotic Bax protein (Sattler et al., 1997). The interactions seen in this structure can explain the propensity of Bcl-2-like proteins to heterodimerize.