The Tubulin Code
Volume 6, Issue 17
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September 1, 2007
Pages 2152 - 2160http://dx.doi.org/10.4161/cc.6.17.4633
Authors: Kristen J. Verhey and Jacek Gaertig View affiliations
Microtubules create diverse arrays with specific cellular functions such as the mitotic spindle, cilia, and bundles inside neurons. How microtubules are regulated to enable specific functions is not well understood. Recent work has shown that posttranslational modifications of the tubulin building blocks mark subpopulations of microtubules and regulate downstream microtubule-based functions. In this way, the tubulin modifications generate a code that can be read by microtubule-associated proteins in a manner analogous to how the histone code directs diverse chromatin functions. Here we review recent progress in understanding how the tubulin code is generated, maintained, and read by microtubule effectors.