Cyclin-dependent Kinases (CDKs)

  • As the name suggests, these kinases are dependent on their regulatory subunit “Cyclins” to function as a kinase.
  • Cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs) are serine/threonine kinases. Originally, they were discovered as a major driving force of cell cycle progression through various cell cycle stages.
  • Their regulatory subunit cyclins are periodically expressed during cell cycles and normally have short half-life.
  • Activation of CDKs is also controlled by phosphorylation/dephosphorylation events.
  • Once active, CDKs phosphorylate their substrate and regulate cell cycle progression. Their dysregulation is reported in several cancers.
  • In humans, 20 CDKs and ≈30 cyclins are reported.

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