May participate in the regulation of synaptic vesicle docking and fusion, possibly through interaction with GTP-binding proteins. Essential for neurotransmission and binds syntaxin, a component of the synaptic vesicle fusion machinery probably in a 1:1 ratio. Can interact with syntaxins 1, 2, and 3 but not syntaxin 4. May play a role in determining the specificity of intracellular fusion reactions.
Brain and spinal cord. Highly enriched in axons.
Defects in STXBP1 are the cause of epileptic encephalopathy early infantile type 4 (EIEE4) [MIM:612164]. Affected individuals have neonatal or infantile onset of seizures, suppression-burst pattern on EEG, profound mental retardation, and MRI evidence of hypomyelination.