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Structural insights into the functional diversity of the CDK–cyclin family

Lookup NU author(s): Daniel Wood, Professor Jane Endicott



This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC BY 4.0).


© 2018 The Authors. Since their characterization as conserved modules that regulate progression through the eukaryotic cell cycle, cyclin-dependent protein kinases (CDKs) in higher eukaryotic cells are now also emerging as significant regulators of transcription, metabolism and cell differentiation. The cyclins, though originally characterized as CDK partners, also have CDK-independent roles that include the regulation of DNA damage repair and transcriptional programmes that direct cell differentiation, apoptosis and metabolic flux. This review compares the structures of the members of the CDK and cyclin families determined by X-ray crystallography, and considers what mechanistic insights they provide to guide functional studies and distinguish CDK- and cyclin-specific activities. Aberrant CDK activity is a hallmark of a number of diseases, and structural studies can provide important insights to identify novel routes to therapy.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Wood DJ, Endicott JA

Publication type: Review

Publication status: Published

Journal: Open Biology

Year: 2018

Volume: 8

Issue: 9

Online publication date: 05/09/2018

Acceptance date: 10/08/2018

ISSN (electronic): 2046-2441

Publisher: Royal Society Publishing


DOI: 10.1098/rsob.180112

PubMed id: 30185601