Sequestration shapes the response of signal transduction cascades

IUBMB Life. 2006 Nov;58(11):659-63. doi: 10.1080/15216540600994340.


Many signal transduction cascades are composed of covalent modification cycles such as kinase/phosphatase cycles. In the 1980s Goldbeter and Koshland showed that such cycles can exhibit non-linear input-output relations when the enzymes are saturated by their substrates, which may facilitate signal processing. Recent papers show that this mechanism is unlikely to cause non-linearity in mammalian signal transduction cascades as sequestration of the target due to enzyme concentrations present in these cascades will hamper this mechanism. However, sequestration due to high-affinity enzymes can shape the dynamics and steady-state behaviour of signal transduction cascades in different ways, some of which are discussed in this review.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Kinetics
  • Models, Biological
  • Phosphoric Monoester Hydrolases / metabolism
  • Phosphorylation
  • Phosphotransferases / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction / physiology*


  • Phosphotransferases
  • Phosphoric Monoester Hydrolases