The opposing actions of target of rapamycin and AMP-activated protein kinase in cell growth control

Cold Spring Harb Perspect Biol. 2015 Aug 3;7(8):a019141. doi: 10.1101/cshperspect.a019141.


Cell growth is a highly regulated, plastic process. Its control involves balancing positive regulation of anabolic processes with negative regulation of catabolic processes. Although target of rapamycin (TOR) is a major promoter of growth in response to nutrients and growth factors, AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK) suppresses anabolic processes in response to energy stress. Both TOR and AMPK are conserved throughout eukaryotic evolution. Here, we review the fundamentally important roles of these two kinases in the regulation of cell growth with particular emphasis on their mutually antagonistic signaling.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • AMP-Activated Protein Kinases / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Cell Division / physiology*
  • Humans
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae / metabolism
  • Signal Transduction
  • TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases / physiology*


  • TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • AMP-Activated Protein Kinases