A number of kinases and signal transduction pathways are known to affect gap junctional intercellular communication and/or phosphorylation of connexins. Most of the information is available for protein kinase A, protein kinase C, mitogen-activated protein kinase, and the tyrosine kinase Src. Much less is known for protein kinase G, Ca2+-calmodulin dependent protein kinase, and casein kinase. However, the present lack of knowledge is not necessarily synonymous with lack of importance in the regulation of intercellular communication and phosphorylation of connexins. Kinases and the phosphorylation of connexins may be involved in the regulation of gap junctional intercellular communication at all levels ranging from the expression of connexin genes to the degradation of the gap junction channels. The exact role of the phosphorylation depends both on the kinase and the connexin involved, as well as the cellular context.
- gap junctional intercellular communication