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Curr Biol. 2002 Jul 23;12(14):R502-8.

The Ran GTPase: theme and variations.

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Laboratory of Gene Regulation and Development, NICHD/NIH, Bethesda, MD 20892-5431, USA.


The small GTPase Ran has roles in multiple cellular processes, including nuclear transport, mitotic spindle assembly, the regulation of cell cycle progression and nuclear assembly. The past year has seen a remarkable unification of these different roles with respect to the effectors and mechanisms through which they function. Our emergent understanding of Ran suggests that it plays a central role in spatial and temporal organization of the vertebrate cell.

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