Twelve years ago a set of glycine-rich proteins (GRP) of plants were characterized and since then a wealth of new GRPs have been identified. The highly specific but diverse expression pattern of grp genes, taken together with the distinct sub-cellular localisation of some GRP groups, clearly indicate that these proteins are implicated in several independent physiological processes. Notwithstanding the absence of a clear definition of the role of GRPs in plant cells, studies conducted with these proteins have provided new and interesting insights on the molecular and cell biology of plants. Complex regulated promoters and distinct mechanisms of gene expression regulation have been demonstrated. New protein targeting pathways, as well as the exportation of GRPs from different cell types have been discovered. These data show that GRPs can be useful as markers and/or models to understand distinct aspects of plant biology. In this review, the structural and functional features of this family of plant proteins will be summarised. Special emphasis will be given to the gene expression regulation of GRPs isolated from different plant species, as it can help to unravel their possible biological functions.