top of page
  • Writer's pictureDr Edin Hamzić

ℹ️ Shortly On Kinases, Tyrosine Kinases, and Receptor Tyrosine Kinases

Updated: Jan 5

❓What Are Kinases, and What Is Their Function?


  • Kinase is an enzyme involved in many cellular processes, including cell growth, differentiation, and death.

  • Kinases are proteins that add a phosphate group to other molecules, further changing their function and activity.

  • The process we just described is also known as phosphorylation (Check out my short post about phosphorylation), and it helps to regulate the activity of many proteins in the cell and is essential for controlling many cellular processes.

  • Kinases are found in all organisms, from bacteria to humans, and they play a crucial role in many biological processes.

  • Dysregulation of kinase activity can lead to disease, and many drugs that target kinases are used to treat diseases such as cancer and autoimmune disorders.


❓What Are Enzymes?

  • To remind you what enzymes are. Enzymes are a type of protein that acts as a catalyst in chemical reactions.

  • They are present in all living cells and play a key role in many biological processes, such as metabolism, cell growth and division, and the immune response.

  • Enzymes bind to specific molecules, called substrates, helping to convert them into different molecules, called products. This process is called enzyme catalysis, and it occurs by lowering the activation energy required for the chemical reaction to take place.

  • Enzymes are highly specific, meaning each enzyme is designed to catalyze only one specific reaction or a small group of related reactions. Enzymes are essential for life and are involved in almost all cellular processes.


❓What Types of Kinases Are There?


  • Now, let’s go back to kinases. There are many different types of kinases. Just a short reminder: kinases are enzymes that catalyze the transfer of a phosphate group from ATP to another molecule. Some examples of types of kinases are:

    • Protein kinases which phosphorylate proteins and play a role in regulating the activity of many cellular processes.

    • Lipid kinases which phosphorylate lipids and play a role in regulating the synthesis and degradation of lipids.

    • Carbohydrate kinases which phosphorylate carbohydrates and play a role in the metabolism of carbohydrates.

    • Nucleotide kinases which phosphorylate nucleotides and play a role in the synthesis and degradation of nucleotides.

    • Kinases that phosphorylate specific amino acids, such as serine, threonine, and tyrosine. These kinases regulate the activity of proteins by phosphorylating specific amino acid residues.


In general, kinases are classified based on the type of molecule they phosphorylate and their specific function and location within the cell.


❓What Are Tyrosine Kinases, and What Is Their Function?

  • Now, let’s briefly explain what tyrosine kinases are. Tyrosine kinases are an enzyme involved in many cellular processes, including cell growth, differentiation, and death, and just one group within the larger group of kinases.

  • The specificity of tyrosine kinases is that they add a phosphate group to tyrosine residues on other proteins, which changes their function and activity.

  • This process, known as tyrosine phosphorylation, is essential for regulating the activity of many proteins in the cell and is involved in many cellular processes.

  • Tyrosine kinases, like kinases in general, are found in all organisms, from bacteria to humans, and they play a crucial role in many biological processes.

  • Dysregulation of tyrosine kinase activity can lead to disease, and many drugs that target tyrosine kinases are used to treat diseases such as cancer and autoimmune disorders.


✍️ Examples of Tyrosine Kinases

  • Examples of well-known tyrosine kinases include the insulin receptor, activated by the hormone insulin, and the epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), activated by the epidermal growth factor (EGF) and plays a role in cell growth and division.

  • Another well-known tyrosine kinase is the BCR-ABL fusion protein, which is a product of the Philadelphia chromosome and is associated with chronic myeloid leukemia.

  • Additionally, many of the proteins that make up the signaling pathways of the immune system, such as the T cell receptor and the B cell receptor, are tyrosine kinases.

  • These kinases play a crucial role in regulating the activity of the immune system and in mediating the immune response to infections and other stimuli.


❓What Are Receptor Tyrosine Kinases, and What Is Their Function?

  • RTKs are a subclass of tyrosine kinases that are found on the surface of cells, and they play a key role in signaling pathways that control many cellular processes similarly to all other kinases.

  • The main characteristic of RTKs is that they are found on the surface of cells. Receptor tyrosine kinases play a critical role in transmitting signals from the extracellular environment into the cell and are essential in many cellular processes, including cell growth, differentiation, and migration.

  • RTKs are activated when they bind to specific molecules called ligands (such as hormones or growth factors), which are typically proteins or small molecules that are produced by other cells.

  • This binding causes a conformational change in the RTK, which activates the enzyme and allows it to add a phosphate group to tyrosine residues on other proteins. This process, known as tyrosine phosphorylation.


✍️ Examples of Receptor Tyrosine Kinases

Examples of well-known receptor tyrosine kinases (RTKs) include:

  1. The vascular endothelial growth factor receptor (VEGFR), which is activated by vascular endothelial growth factor (VEGF) and plays a role in angiogenesis (the formation of new blood vessels) and

  2. The fibroblast growth factor receptor (FGFR) is activated by fibroblast growth factor (FGF) and plays a role in cell growth, differentiation, and survival.



Yorumlar


bottom of page