Adenylyl cyclase is an enzyme that catalyzes the conversion of ATP to cyclic AMP (cAMP). Nine mammalian isoforms have been identified, each expressed differently in various tissues of the body. Adenylyl cyclase is a dimer with a molecular weight of about 120,000 (Taussig, et. al, 1995). It is an integral membrane protein made up of two groups of six transmembrane units, each with a catalytic domain on the cytosylic side (Cooper, et. al, 1995). The molecule depicted here is the catalytic core of type II adenylyl cyclase, which is primarily expressed in the cerebellum. All adenylyl cyclases are activated by the hydrocarbon forskolin and the GTP-bound a-subunit of the stimulatory G protein; this form is also activated by the G protein By-subunit.
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