Small G proteins and their regulators in cellular signalling

Mol Cell Endocrinol. 2012 Apr 28;353(1-2):10-20. doi: 10.1016/j.mce.2011.11.005. Epub 2011 Nov 15.


Small molecular weight GTPases (small G proteins) are essential in the transduction of signals from different plasma membrane receptors. Due to their endogenous GTP-hydrolyzing activity, these proteins function as time-dependent biological switches controlling diverse cellular functions including cell shape and migration, cell proliferation, gene transcription, vesicular transport and membrane-trafficking. This review focuses on endocrine diseases linked to small G proteins. We provide examples for the regulation of the activity of small G proteins by various mechanisms such as posttranslational modifications, guanine nucleotide exchange factors (GEFs), GTPase activating proteins (GAPs) or guanine nucleotide dissociation inhibitors (GDIs). Finally we summarize endocrine diseases where small G proteins or their regulatory proteins have been revealed as the cause.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Biological Transport, Active / genetics
  • Cell Movement / genetics
  • Cell Proliferation
  • Cell Shape / genetics
  • Endocrine System Diseases / genetics
  • Endocrine System Diseases / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Monomeric GTP-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • Monomeric GTP-Binding Proteins / metabolism*
  • Protein Processing, Post-Translational / genetics
  • Signal Transduction*
  • Transcription, Genetic / genetics


  • Monomeric GTP-Binding Proteins