Mitogen-activated protein (MAP) kinase kinase (MAPKK) is a recently characterized activator of MAP kinase (MAPK), and is considered to be regulated by a protooncogene product c-Raf-1. It is, however, unclear whether the signals originating from c-Raf-1 utilize this phosphorylation cascade to lead to oncogenesis. To clarify this point, we isolated rat MAPKK cDNAs, and identified two distinct cDNAs encoding MAPKK and a highly related kinase, both with molecular weights of 4̃5 kDa (MEK1 and MEK2). Genomic Southern blot analyses suggested that MAPKK. may form a large gene family.
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