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Trends Biochem Sci. 1998 May;23(5):179-84.

Insights into Src kinase functions: structural comparisons.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Dept of Biochemistry and Molecular Biophysics, Columbia University, New York 10032, USA.


Recent structures of Src tyrosine kinases reveal complex mechanisms for regulation of enzymatic activity. The regulatory SH3 and SH2 domains bind to the back of the catalytic kinase domain via a linker region that joins the SH2 domain to the catalytic domain. Members of a subgroup of the Src kinase family show distinct features in this linker and in the loops that interact with it. Hydrophobicity of key residues in this region is important for intramolecular regulation. The kinases Abl, Btk and Csk seem to have the same molecular architecture as Src. Structural comparisons between serine/threonine and tyrosine kinases indicate a specific twisting mechanism involving the N- and C-terminal lobes of the catalytic domain. This motion could provide insights into the various mechanisms used to regulate kinase activity.

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