Big roles of small kinases: the complex functions of receptor-like cytoplasmic kinases in plant immunity and development

J Integr Plant Biol. 2013 Dec;55(12):1188-97. doi: 10.1111/jipb.12071. Epub 2013 Sep 18.


Plants have evolved a large number of receptor-like cytoplasmic kinases (RLCKs) that often functionally and physically associate with receptor-like kinases (RLKs) to modulate plant growth, development and immune responses. Without any apparent extracellular domain, RLCKs relay intracellular signaling often via RLK complex-mediated transphosphorylation events. Recent advances have suggested essential roles of diverse RLCKs in concert with RLKs in regulating various cellular and physiological responses. We summarize here the complex roles of RLCKs in mediating plant immune responses and growth regulation, and discuss specific and overlapping functions of RLCKs in transducing diverse signaling pathways. [Figure: see text] Ping He (Corresponding author).

Keywords: Phosphorylation; plant development; plant immunity; receptor-like cytoplasmic kinases.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant / genetics
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Plant / physiology
  • Plant Immunity / genetics
  • Plant Immunity / physiology*
  • Protein Kinases / genetics
  • Protein Kinases / metabolism*
  • Signal Transduction / genetics
  • Signal Transduction / physiology


  • Protein Kinases