Since the discovery of cytoglobin (Cygb) a decade ago, growing amounts of data have been gathered to characterise Cygb biochemistry, functioning and implication in human pathologies. Its molecular roles remain under investigation, but nitric oxide dioxygenase and lipid peroxidase activities have been demonstrated. Cygb expression increases in response to various stress conditions including hypoxia, oxidative stress and fibrotic stimulation. When exogenously overexpressed, Cygb revealed cytoprotection against these factors. Cygb was shown to be upregulated in fibrosis and neurodegenerative disorders and downregulated in multiple cancer types. CYGB was also found within the minimal region of a hereditary tylosis with oesophageal cancer syndrome, and its expression was reduced in tylotic samples. Recently, Cygb has been shown to inhibit cancer cell growth in vitro, thus confirming its suggested tumour suppressor role. This article aims to review the biochemical and functional aspects of Cygb, its involvement in various pathological conditions and potential clinical utility.
- Molecular Targeted Therapy