The β-propeller is a highly symmetrical structure with 4-10 repeats of a four-stranded antiparallel β-sheet motif. Although β-propeller proteins with different blade numbers all adopt disc-like shapes, they are involved in a diverse set of functions, and defects in this family of proteins have been associated with human diseases. However, it has remained ambiguous how variations in blade number could alter the function of β-propellers. In addition to the regularly arranged β-propeller topology, a recently discovered β-pinwheel propeller has been found. Here, we review the structural and functional diversity of β-propeller proteins, including β-pinwheels, as well as recent advances in the typical and atypical propeller structures.
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