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Adv Enzyme Regul. 2005;45:186-200. Epub 2005 Sep 27.

Role of signal transduction and actin in G1 phase progression.

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  • 1Department of Molecular Cell Biology, Institute of Biomembranes, Utrecht University, Padualaan 8, 3584CH Utrecht, The Netherlands.


Progression through the cell cycle of mammalian cells is dependent upon external factors such as growth- and ECM factors. These factors exert their effect predominantly during the G1 phase of the cell cycle. When cells are cultured in suspension or when growth factors are withdrawn from the medium, cells will stop cell cycle progression and enter a quiescent state. Cells will remain in this quiescent state until extracellular conditions change and cells are stimulated to re-enter the cell cycle. This stimulation is mediated by various signal transduction cascades such as the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) pathway and the phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI3-kinase) pathway. In Chinese hamster ovary cells at least two serum-dependent points exist during G1 phase that lead to diffent cellular responses. The first point is located immediately after mitosis and is suggested to link with apoptosis. The second point is located in late G1 phase and probably corresponds with cellular differentiation. Signal transduction is mutually related to the cytoskeleton, especially the actin microfilament system. The actin microfilament system influences signal transduction and several signal transduction pathways influence the actin structure. Here we describe the role of the MAPK and PI3-kinase activities and of actin microfilaments in progression through the cell cycle and their role in the two G1 checkpoints.

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