protein 4.1

pro·tein 4.1

a peripheral protein that binds tightly to spectrin in the red blood cell membrane; it also binds to certain glycophorins and helps determine the shape and flexibility of the red blood cell.


A gene on chromosome 1p33-p32 that encodes protein 4.1, which, with spectrin and actin, constitutes the red cell membrane cytoskeletal network. This network plays a critical role in red cell shape and deformability.

Molecular pathology
EPB41 mutations cause elliptocytosis type 1.
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More recently, his group has shown that a key red cell membrane protein, protein 4.