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Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 2006;38(9):1469-75. Epub 2006 Mar 2.

Leucine-rich repeat kinase 2: relevance to Parkinson's disease.

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Institute of Pathology, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH 44106, USA.


Human leucine-rich repeat kinase 2 (LRRK2) is a novel kinase belonging to the ROCO protein superfamily (Ras of complex proteins (Roc) with a C-terminal of Roc domain). This large complex protein of 280kDa contains several functional domains including leucine-rich repeats, Ras-related GTPase, mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase kinase (MAPKKK), and WD40 repeats. While definitive functions of LRRK2 have yet to be described, the domain structure of LRRK2 suggests that it plays an important role in the regulation of signal transduction cascades through its dual enzymatic activities of GTPase and MAPKKK. Moreover, mutations in LRRK2 have been found to be thus far the most frequent cause of late-onset familial and idiopathic Parkinson's disease. Further investigations should allow for the elucidation of how pathogenic mutations trigger changes in the structure and function of LRRK2 that lead to aberrant signal transduction and neurodegeneration in Parkinson's disease.

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