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Chatterboxes: the structural and functional diversity of cyclins

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Natalie TatumORCiD, Professor Jane Endicott


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Proteins of the cyclin family have divergent sequences and execute diverse roles within the cell while sharing a common fold: the cyclin box domain. Structural studies of cyclins have played a key role in our characterization and understanding of cellular processes that they control, though to date only ten of the 29 CDK-activating cyclins have been structurally characterized by X-ray crystallography or cryo-electron microscopy with or without their cognate kinases. In this review, we survey the available structures of human cyclins, highlighting their molecular features in the context of their cellular roles. We pay particular attention to how cyclin activity is regulated through fine control of degradation motif recognition and ubiquitination. Finally, we discuss the emergent roles of cyclins independent of their roles as cyclin-dependent protein kinase activators, demonstrating the cyclin box domain to be a versatile and generalized scaffolding domain for protein-protein interactions across the cellularmachinery.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Tatum NJ, Endicott JA

Publication type: Review

Publication status: Published

Journal: Seminars in Cell and Developmental Biology

Year: 2020

Volume: 107

Pages: 4-20

Print publication date: 01/11/2020

Online publication date: 13/05/2020

Acceptance date: 29/04/2020

ISSN (print): 1084-9521

ISSN (electronic): 1096-3634


DOI: 10.1016/j.semcdb.2020.04.021