Encyclopedia of Signaling Molecules

2018 Edition
| Editors: Sangdun Choi


  • Yumeng Guo
  • Yu WangEmail author
  • Bo Bai
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-67199-4_101554


Historical Background

Cyclin-dependent kinase 5 (CDK5), a proline-directed serine/threonine-protein kinase, was originally purified from bovine brain and defined as a neuronal CDC2 (CDK1)-like kinase (NCLK) (Roder and Ingram 1991; Hellmich et al. 1992). Later on, CDK5 demonstrated capability to induce the Alzheimer-like characteristics by phosphorylation of tau protein (Baumann et al. 1993). p35 (CDK5R1) was then characterized as a regulatory subunit of CDK5 to activate its kinase activity, with subsequent identification of its isoform p39 (CDK5R2) (Tsai et al. 1994; Tang et al. 1995). CDK5/p35 is the first example of a CDC2-like kinase with neuronal function. A truncated form of p35, p25, was purified with CDK5 as a hetero-dimer exhibiting activity in vitro and regarded as a novel regulatory subunit of CDK5 (Lew et al. 1994). Accumulation of p25 is found...

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.State Key Laboratory of Pharmaceutical Biotechnology and Department of Pharmacology and PharmacyThe University of Hong KongHong KongChina