The role of formins in human disease

Aaron D. DeWard, Van Andel Research Institute
Kathryn M. Eisenmann, The University of Toledo
Stephen F. Matheson, Van Andel Research Institute
Arthur S. Alberts, Van Andel Research Institute


Formins are a conserved family of proteins that play key roles in cytoskeletal remodeling. They nucleate and processively elongate non-branched actin filaments and also modulate microtubule dynamics. Despite their significant contributions to cell biology and development, few studies have directly implicated formins in disease pathogenesis. This review highlights the roles of formins in cell division, migration, immunity, and microvesicle formation in the context of human disease. In addition, we discuss the importance of controlling formin activity and protein expression to maintain cell homeostasis.