Reversible palmitoylation in synaptic junctions

December 30th, 2008

The protein known as Cdc42 (a GTPase enzyme) regulates cell polarity and the actin cytoskeleton. In the December 25, 2008 issue of Nature, Kang et al. describe a brain isoform of Cdc42 that is regulated by reversible covalent attachment of palmitic acid to the protein.  This palmitoylated isoform, dubbed Cdc42-palm concentrates in dendritic spines and has a special role in inducing these post-synaptic structures.

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