Members of the mammalian protein kinase C (PKC) superfamily play key regulatory roles in a multitude of cellular processes, ranging from control of fundamental cell autonomous activities, such as proliferation, to more organismal functions, such as memory. However, understanding of mammalian PKC signalling systems is complicated by the large number of family members. Significant progress has been made through studies based on comparative analysis, which have defined a number of regulatory elements in PKCs which confer specific location and activation signals to each isotype. Further studies on simple organisms have shown that PKC signalling paradigms are conserved through evolution from yeast to humans, underscoring the importance of this family in cellular signalling and giving novel insights into PKC function in complex mammalian systems.
Present address: Department of Biochemistry, School of Medical Sciences, University of Bristol, Bristol BS8 1TD, U.K.