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Science. 1997 Mar 28;275(5308):1930-4.

Nuclear export of NF-ATc enhanced by glycogen synthase kinase-3.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Developmental Biology, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA.


The transcription factor NF-AT responds to Ca2+-calcineurin signals by translocating to the nucleus, where it participates in the activation of early immune response genes. Calcineurin dephosphorylates conserved serine residues in the amino terminus of NF-AT, resulting in nuclear import. Purification of the NF-AT kinase revealed that it is composed of a priming kinase activity and glycogen synthase kinase-3 (GSK-3). GSK-3 phosphorylates conserved serines necessary for nuclear export, promotes nuclear exit, and thereby opposes Ca2+-calcineurin signaling. Because GSK-3 responds to signals initiated by Wnt and other ligands, NF-AT family members could be effectors of these pathways.

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