Kinesin superfamily proteins (KIFs): Various functions and their relevance for important phenomena in life and diseases

Exp Cell Res. 2015 May 15;334(1):16-25. doi: 10.1016/j.yexcr.2015.02.016. Epub 2015 Feb 24.


Kinesin superfamily proteins (KIFs) largely serve as molecular motors on the microtubule system and transport various cellular proteins, macromolecules, and organelles. These transports are fundamental to cellular logistics, and at times, they directly modulate signal transduction by altering the semantics of informational molecules. In this review, we will summarize recent approaches to the regulation of the transport destinations and to the physiological relevance of the role of these proteins in neuroscience, ciliary functions, and metabolic diseases. Understanding these burning questions will be essential in establishing a new paradigm of cellular functions and disease pathogenesis.

Keywords: Brain development; Cilia; Embryonic development; Intracellular transport; KIFs; Kinesin; Learning and memory; Metabolic diseases; Molecular motor.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Central Nervous System Diseases / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Kinesin / metabolism*
  • Metabolic Diseases / metabolism*


  • Kinesin