The nuclear lamins: flexibility in function

Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2013 Jan;14(1):13-24. doi: 10.1038/nrm3488. Epub 2012 Dec 5.


The nuclear lamina is an important structural determinant for the nuclear envelope as a whole, attaching chromatin domains to the nuclear periphery and localizing some nuclear envelope proteins. The major components of the lamina are the A-type and B-type lamins, which are members of the intermediate filament protein family. Whereas the expression of A-type lamins is developmentally regulated, B-type lamins, as a class, are found in all cells. The association of B-type lamins with many aspects of nuclear function has led to the view that these are essential proteins, and there is growing evidence suggesting that they regulate cellular senescence. However, B-type lamins are dispensable in certain cell types in vivo, and neither A-type nor B-type lamins may be required in early embryos or embryonic stem cells. The picture that is beginning to emerge is of a complex network of interactions at the nuclear periphery that may be defined by cell- and tissue-specific functions.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Aging, Premature / genetics
  • Animals
  • Bone and Bones / abnormalities
  • Cell Nucleus / genetics
  • Cell Nucleus / metabolism
  • Cellular Senescence* / genetics
  • Chromatin
  • Embryonic Stem Cells
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
  • Humans
  • Intermediate Filaments / genetics
  • Intermediate Filaments / metabolism
  • Mice
  • Muscular Dystrophy, Animal / genetics
  • Mutation
  • Nuclear Lamina / genetics
  • Nuclear Lamina / metabolism*
  • Nuclear Proteins / genetics*
  • Nuclear Proteins / metabolism*


  • Chromatin
  • Nuclear Proteins