, Volume 249, Issue 4, pp 887–899

Functions of the Arabidopsis kinesin superfamily of microtubule-based motor proteins

Review Article


Plants possess a large number of microtubule-based kinesin motor proteins. While the kinesin-2, 3, 9, and 11 families are absent from land plants, the kinesin-7 and 14 families are greatly expanded. In addition, some kinesins are specifically present only in land plants. The distinctive inventory of plant kinesins suggests that kinesins have evolved to perform specialized functions in plants. Plants assemble unique microtubule arrays during their cell cycle, including the interphase cortical microtubule array, preprophase band, anastral spindle and phragmoplast. In this review, we explore the functions of plant kinesins from a microtubule array viewpoint, focusing mainly on Arabidopsis kinesins. We emphasize the conserved and novel functions of plant kinesins in the organization and function of the different microtubule arrays.


Plant Cortical microtubule Preprophase band Spindle Phragmoplast 


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© Springer-Verlag 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Biology DepartmentWashington UniversitySt. LouisUSA

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