The regulation and activities of the multifunctional serine/threonine kinase Akt/PKB

Exp Cell Res. 1999 Nov 25;253(1):210-29. doi: 10.1006/excr.1999.4690.


The serine/threonine kinase Akt, or protein kinase B (PKB), has recently been a focus of intense research. It appears that Akt/PKB lies in the crossroads of multiple cellular signaling pathways and acts as a transducer of many functions initiated by growth factor receptors that activate phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (PI 3-kinase). Akt/PKB is particularly important in mediating several metabolic actions of insulin. Another major activity of Akt/PKB is to mediate cell survival. In addition, the recent discovery of the tumor suppressor PTEN as an antagonist of PI 3-kinase and Akt/PKB kinase activity suggests that Akt/PKB is a critical factor in the genesis of cancer. Thus, elucidation of the mechanisms of Akt/PKB regulation and its physiological functions should be important for the understanding of cellular metabolism, apoptosis, and cancer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic
  • Diabetes Mellitus / etiology
  • Enzyme Activation
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases / metabolism
  • Phosphorylation
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins / metabolism*
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt
  • Signal Transduction


  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins
  • Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases
  • Protein-Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt