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Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2000 Aug 11;274(3):872-9.

Cloning of DPK, a novel dendritic cell-derived protein kinase activating the ERK1/ERK2 and JNK/SAPK pathways.

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Department of Immunology, Second Military Medical University, 800 Xiangyin Road, Shanghai, 200433, People's Republic of China.


Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) cascades are the major signaling systems transducing extracellular signals into intracellular responses, which mainly include the extracellular signal-regulated kinase (ERK) pathway, the c-Jun N-terminal kinase/stress-activated protein kinase (JNK/SAPK) pathway, and the p38 pathway. From dendritic cell cDNA library, we isolated a full-length cDNA encoding a potentially novel 898-residue kinase, which was designated DPK. The protein contained a potential kinase domain at the N-terminal exhibiting homology with MEKK1-, MEKK2-, MEKK3-, MEKK4-, MEKK5-, Tpl-2-, and p21-activated kinases (PAKs), but no GTPase-binding domain which is characteristic of PAKs. Northern blotting analysis showed that DPK was ubiquitously expressed in normal tissues, with abundant expression in kidney, skeletal muscle, heart, and liver. When overexpressed in transfected NIH3T3 cells, it could activate both the ERK1/ERK2 pathway and the SAPK pathway in a dose-dependent manner, but not affect the p38 pathway. These findings suggested that DPK might be a novel candidate MAPKKK.

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