In this section learn that many signaling pathways ultimately pass messages to the nucleus of a cell.
Many signaling pathways ultimately pass messages to the nucleus of a cell. The Raf protein (shown in white) activates another messenger protein (in brown) as it passes through fibers that make up the cell's cytoskeleton. The signal is passed to yet another messenger (in purple). These messenger proteins are known as kinases, enzymes with the ability to activate other proteins through the addition of phosphate groups. This protein travels to the nucleus past cellular organelles such as the mitochondria (in glowing orange) and the network of membranes known as the endoplasmic reticulum (shown in light brown).
Raf: A protein that interacts with the Ras protein. Raf is an example of a kinase enzyme, able to activate other proteins by adding phosphate molecules to serine and threonine amino acids. Mutations in the Raf protein are present in a large percentage of human malignant melanomas.
Mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinases: These enzymes – sometimes known as extracellular signal-regulated kinases (ERKs) – add phosphates to other proteins to activate or deactivate them. Mutations in these kinases can disrupt cell signaling and cause abnormal cell growth and proliferation. These proteins are good targets for drugs against cancer.
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In this section learn that the binding of growth factors outside the cell causes receptors ends to intertwine and activate each other, and once active, the modified receptor ends interact with messenger proteins.
Journey inside a cell as you follow proteins and learn about cellular interactions. This 3-D animation brings to life the inner workings of a fibroblast cell as it responds to external signals. Created by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and Interactive Know