Tissue specific expression of Yrk kinase: Implications for differentiation and inflammation

M. Martins-Green, John L. Bixby, Tadashi Yamamoto, Thomas Graf, Marius Sudol

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


The Src family of proto-oncogenes is a highly conserved group of non- receptor tyrosine kinases with very similar, but not identical, tissue distributions and functions. Yrk is a recently discovered new member of this family. Here we report the patterns of expression of this kinase in a variety of chicken tissues during development and after hatching, and experiments that correlate some of the observed patterns of expression with potential functions. The results show that the Yrk protein is primarily found in neuronal and epithelial cells and in monocyte/macrophages. In neuronal tissues of hatched chicks, Yrk is expressed in Purkinje cells, in the gigantocellularis of the brain-stem, and in retinal ganglion cells. In addition, staining for this kinase is also seen as thread-like and punctate patterns suggesting staining in neurites and growth cones. Epithelial cells express Yrk in the stomach during late developmental stages and after hatching but, in other epithelia such as in the peridermis, intestine and kidney, expression is high during development but low (skin) or undetectable (intestine and kidney) after hatching. These results suggest that Yrk may have several functional roles, specifically in cell migration and/or differentiation during neuronal and epithelial cell development and in maintenance of the differentiated phenotype. In this study we also show that significant levels of Yrk are detected in monocytes of the blood and in tissue macrophages. Analysis of chicken hematopoietic cell lines confirmed the expression of Yrk in cells of monocyte/macrophage lineage and show for the first time in experimentally-induced inflammation that Yrk kinase activity is high during the period of monocyte infiltration, raising the possibility that this kinase plays a role in inflammation and/or response to injury. (C) 2000 Elsevier Science Ltd.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)351-364
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 1 2000


  • Epithelial
  • Hematopoietic
  • Injury
  • Neuronal
  • Wound-healing

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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