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Mol Cell Biochem. 1993 Nov;127-128:157-69.

Networking with mitogen-activated protein kinases.

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  • 1Biomedical Research Centre, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, Canada.


Mitogen activated protein (MAP) kinases and their target ribosomal protein S6 (RSK) kinases have been recognized as shared components in the intracellular signaling pathways of many diverse cytokines. Recent studies have extended this protein kinase cascade by identifying the major activator of vertebrate MAP kinases as a serine/threonine/tyrosine-protein kinase called MEK, which is related to yeast mating factor-regulated protein kinases encoded by the STE7 and byr1 genes. MEK, in turn, may be activated following its phosphorylation on serine by either of the kinases encoded by proto-oncogenes raf1 or mos, as well as by p78mekk, which is related to the yeast STE11 and byr2 gene products. Isoforms of all of these protein kinases may specifically combine to assemble distinct modules for intracellular signal transmission. However, the fundamental architecture of these protein kinase cascades has been highly conserved during eukaryotic evolution.

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