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Adv Enzyme Regul. 2005;45:201-14. Epub 2005 Jul 15.

Emerging roles of phosphatidylinositol monophosphates in cellular signaling and trafficking.

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Inserm U563-CPTP, IFR 30, Department of Oncogenesis and signaling in haematopoïetic cells, CHU Purpan, 31024 Toulouse, France.


The phosphoinositide metabolism that is highly controlled by a set of kinases, phosphatases and phospholipases leads to the production of several second messengers playing critical roles in intracellular signal transduction mechanisms. Recent discoveries have unraveled unexpected roles for the three phosphatidylinositol monophosphates, PtdIns(3)P, PtdIns(4)P and PtdIns(5)P, that appear now as important lipid messengers able to specifically interact with proteins. The formation of functionally distinct and independently regulated pools of phosphatidylinositol monophosphates probably contributes to the specificity of the interactions with their targets. The relative enrichment of organelles in a particular species of phosphoinositides (i.e. PtdIns(3)P in endosomes, PtdIns(4)P in Golgi and PtdIns(4,5)P2 in plasma membrane) suggests the notion of lipid-defined organelle identity. PtdIns(3)P is now clearly involved in vesicular trafficking by interaction with a set of FYVE domain-containing proteins both in yeast and in mammals. PtdIns(4)P, which until now was only considered as a precursor for PtdIns(4,5)P2, appears as a regulator on its own, by recruiting a set of proteins to the trans-Golgi network. PtdIns(5)P, the most recently discovered inositol lipid, is also emerging as a potentially important signaling molecule.

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