Serine/threonine-protein kinase, Ulk1/Ulk2 (IPR016237)

Short name: Ser/Thr_kin_STPK_Ulk-1/2

Overlapping homologous superfamilies


Family relationships



Protein phosphorylation, which plays a key role in most cellular activities, is a reversible process mediated by protein kinases and phosphoprotein phosphatases. Protein kinases catalyse the transfer of the gamma phosphate from nucleotide triphosphates (often ATP) to one or more amino acid residues in a protein substrate side chain, resulting in a conformational change affecting protein function. Phosphoprotein phosphatases catalyse the reverse process. Protein kinases fall into three broad classes, characterised with respect to substrate specificity [PMID: 3291115]:

  • Serine/threonine-protein kinases
  • Tyrosine-protein kinases
  • Dual specificity protein kinases (e.g. MEK - phosphorylates both Thr and Tyr on target proteins)

Protein kinase function is evolutionarily conserved from Escherichia coli to human [PMID: 12471243]. Protein kinases play a role in a multitude of cellular processes, including division, proliferation, apoptosis, and differentiation [PMID: 12368087]. Phosphorylation usually results in a functional change of the target protein by changing enzyme activity, cellular location, or association with other proteins. The catalytic subunits of protein kinases are highly conserved, and several structures have been solved [PMID: 15078142], leading to large screens to develop kinase-specific inhibitors for the treatments of a number of diseases [PMID: 15320712].

This represents serine/threonine-protein kinases (EC:, such as Ulk1 and Ulk2 (Unc-51-Like Kinase). Ulk1 and Ulk2 regulate filopodia extension and branching of sensory axons. They are important for axon growth, playing an essential role in neurite extension of cerebellar granule cells [PMID: 7389358, PMID: 15014045].

GO terms

Biological Process

GO:0007409 axonogenesis
GO:0006468 protein phosphorylation
GO:0007165 signal transduction

Molecular Function

GO:0005524 ATP binding
GO:0004674 protein serine/threonine kinase activity

Cellular Component

No terms assigned in this category.

Contributing signatures

Signatures from InterPro member databases are used to construct an entry.