MAP kinases: universal multi-purpose signaling tools

C. Jonak*, E. Heberle-Bors, H. Hirt

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

61 Scopus citations


MAP (mitogen-activated protein) kinases are serine/threonine protein kinases and mediate intracellular phosphorylation events linking various extracellular signals to different cellular targets. MAP kinase, MAP kinase kinase and MAP kinase kinase kinase are functional protein kinase units that are conserved in several signal transduction pathways in animals and yeasts. Isolation of all three components was also shown in plants and suggests conservation of a protein kinase module in all eukaryotic cells. In plants, MAP kinase modules appear to be involved in ethylene signaling and auxin-induced cell proliferation. Therefore, coupling of different extracellular signals to different physiological responses is mediated by MAP kinase cascades and appears to have evolved from a single prototypical protein kinase module which has been adapted to the specific requirements of different organisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)407-416
Number of pages10
JournalPlant Molecular Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 1994
Externally publishedYes


  • MAP kinases
  • cell division
  • serine/threonine protein kinases
  • signal transduction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Agronomy and Crop Science
  • Plant Science


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