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Trends Biochem Sci. 2001 Sep;26(9):545-50.

Kinesin carries the signal.

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Dept of Cell Biology, Harvard Medical School, 240 Longwood Ave, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Conventional kinesin has long been known to be a molecular motor that transports vesicular cargo, but only recently have we begun to understand how it functions in cells. Regulation of kinesin involves self-inhibition in which a head-to-tail interaction prevents microtubule binding. Although the mechanism of motor activation remains to be clarified, recent progress with respect to cargo binding might provide a clue. Kinesin binds directly to the JIPs (JNK-interacting proteins), identified previously as scaffolding proteins in the JNK (c-Jun NH(2)-terminal kinase) signaling pathway. The JIPs can allow kinesin to transport many different cargoes and to concentrate and respond to signaling pathways at certain sites within the cell. The use of scaffolding proteins could be a general mechanism by which molecular motors link to their cargoes.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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