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Annu Rev Physiol. 2007;69:483-510.

Beta-arrestins and cell signaling.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Department of Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, North Carolina 27710, USA.


Upon their discovery, beta-arrestins 1 and 2 were named for their capacity to sterically hinder the G protein coupling of agonist-activated seven-transmembrane receptors, ultimately resulting in receptor desensitization. Surprisingly, recent evidence shows that beta-arrestins can also function to activate signaling cascades independently of G protein activation. By serving as multiprotein scaffolds, the beta-arrestins bring elements of specific signaling pathways into close proximity. beta-Arrestin regulation has been demonstrated for an ever-increasing number of signaling molecules, including the mitogen-activated protein kinases ERK, JNK, and p38 as well as Akt, PI3 kinase, and RhoA. In addition, investigators are discovering new roles for beta-arrestins in nuclear functions. Here, we review the signaling capacities of these versatile adapter molecules and discuss the possible implications for cellular processes such as chemotaxis and apoptosis.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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