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J Cell Sci. 2011 Jul 15;124(Pt 14):2323-34. doi: 10.1242/jcs.087106.

Protein phosphatases and the regulation of mitosis.

Author information

  • 1University of Liverpool, Cancer Research Centre, 200 London Road, Liverpool L3 9TA, UK. francis.barr@bioch.ox.ac.uk


Dynamic control of protein phosphorylation is necessary for the regulation of many cellular processes, including mitosis and cytokinesis. Indeed, although the central role of protein kinases is widely appreciated and intensely studied, the importance of protein phosphatases is often overlooked. Recent studies, however, have highlighted the considerable role of protein phosphatases in both the spatial and temporal control of protein kinase activity, and the modulation of substrate phosphorylation. Here, we will focus on recent advances in our understanding of phosphatase structure, and the importance of phosphatase function in the control of mitotic spindle formation, chromosome architecture and cohesion, and cell division.

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