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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2007 Apr;1768(4):756-71. Epub 2006 Oct 4.

The discovery of signal transduction by G proteins: a personal account and an overview of the initial findings and contributions that led to our present understanding.

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Division of Intramural Research, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services, Research Triangle Park, NC 27709, USA.


The realization that there existed a G-protein coupled signal transduction mechanism developed gradually and was initially the result of an ill fated quest for uncovering the mechanism of action of insulin, followed by a refocused research in many laboratories, including mine, on how GTP acted to increase hormonal stimulation of adenylyl cyclase. Independent research into how light-activated rhodopsin triggers a response in photoreceptor cells of the retina and the attendant biochemical studies joined midway and, without the left hand knowing well what the right hand was doing, preceded classical G protein research in identifying the molecular players responsible for signal transduction by G proteins.

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