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Trends Biochem Sci. 1995 Mar;20(3):117-22.

Parallel signal processing among mammalian MAPKs.

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  • 1Nuclear Signalling Laboratory, Randall Institute, King's College London, UK.


The intracellular signalling field is dominated by the mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) cascade and its control, which involves the small GTPase Ras and sequential kinase activation. Until recently, ERK1 and ERK2 were the only cloned and well-characterized mammalian MAPKs; diverse ligand-stimulated, proline-directed protein phosphorylation events were attributed to these kinases. The recent discovery of two other MAPK subtypes, the JNK/SAPK subfamily and p38/RK (mammalian equivalents of HOG1 in yeast), reveals extreme complexity within the family and, most intriguingly, the existence in mammalian cells of parallel MAPK cascades that can be activated simultaneously.

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