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FEBS J. 2009 Apr;276(7):1817-25. doi: 10.1111/j.1742-4658.2009.06928.x. Epub 2009 Feb 23.

Compartmentalized signalling: Ras proteins and signalling nanoclusters.

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Physiological Laboratory, University of Liverpool, Liverpool, UK.


Differential subcellular compartmentalization of the three main Ras isoforms (H-Ras, N-Ras and K-Ras) is believed to underlie their biological differences. Modulatable interactions between cellular membranes and Ras C-terminal hypervariable region motifs determine differences in trafficking and the relative proportions of each isoform in cell-surface signalling nanoclusters and intracellular endoplasmic reticulum/Golgi, endosomal and mitochondrial compartments. Ras regulators, effectors and scaffolds are also differentially distributed, potentially enabling preferential coupling to specific signalling pathways in each subcellular location. Here we summarize the mechanisms underlying compartment-specific Ras signalling and the outputs generated.

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