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Free Content Multiple roles of the mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase/mitogen-activated protein kinase cascade in Xenopus laevis

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Mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) was originally identified as a serine/threonine protein kinase that is rapidly activated in response to various growth factors and tumor promoters in mammalian cultured cells. The kinase cascade including MAPK and its direct activator, MAPK kinase (MAPKK), is now believed to transmit various extracellular signals into their intracellular targets in eukaryotic cells. It has been reported that activation of MAPKK and MAPK occurs during the meiotic maturation of oocytes in several species, including Xenopus laevis. Studies with neutralizing antibodies against MAPKK, MAPK phosphatases and constitutively active MAPKK or MAPK have revealed a crucial role of the MAPKK/MAPK cascade in a number of developmental processes in Xenopus oocytes and embryos.

Keywords: Xenopus laevis; kinase cascade; mesoderm induction; mitogen-activated protein kinase; oocyte maturation

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: Department of Genetics and Molecular Biology, Institute for Virus Research, Kyoto University, Sakyo-ku, Kyoto 606-01, Japan.

Publication date: December 1, 1996

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