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Plant J. 1993 Jun;3(6):847-56.

The MsK family of alfalfa protein kinase genes encodes homologues of shaggy/glycogen synthase kinase-3 and shows differential expression patterns in plant organs and development.

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Institute of Microbiology and Genetics, University of Vienna, Austria.


This paper reports on the isolation of a novel class of plant serine/threonine protein kinase genes, MsK-1, MsK-2 and MsK-3. They belong to the superfamily of cdc2-like genes, but show highest identity to the Drosophila shaggy and rat GSK-3 proteins (65-70%). All of these kinases share a highly conserved catalytic protein kinase domain. Different amino-terminal extensions distinguish the different proteins. The different plant kinases do not originate from differential processing of the same gene as is found for shaggy, but are encoded by different members of a gene family. Similarly to the shaggy kinases, the plant kinases show different organ-specific and stage-specific developmental expression patterns. Since the shaggy kinases play an important role in intercellular communication in Drosophila development, the MsK kinases are expected to perform a similar function in plants.

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