Emerging cell biological functions of phosphatidylinositol 5 phosphate 4 kinase

Curr Opin Cell Biol. 2021 Aug:71:15-20. doi: 10.1016/j.ceb.2021.01.012. Epub 2021 Mar 4.


The generation of phosphoinositides (PIs) with spatial and temporal control is a key mechanism in cellular organization and signaling. The synthesis of PIs is mediated by PI kinases, proteins that are able to phosphorylate unique substrates at specific positions on the inositol headgroup to generate signaling molecules. Phosphatidylinositol 5 phosphate 4 kinase (PIP4K) is one such lipid kinase that is able to specifically phosphorylate phosphatidylinositol 5 phosphate, the most recently discovered PI to generate the well-known and abundant PI, phosphatidylinositol 4,5 bisphosphate [PI(4,5)P2]. PIP4K appears to be encoded only in metazoan genomes, and several genetic studies indicate important physiological functions for these enzymes in metabolism, immune function, and growth control. PIP4K has recently been reported to localize to multiple cellular compartments, including the nucleus, plasma membrane, endosomal systems, and autophagosome. However, the biochemical activity of these enzymes that is relevant to these physiological functions remains elusive. We review recent developments in this area and highlight emerging roles for these enzymes in cellular organization.

Keywords: Autophagy; Class I PI3K; Endocytosis; PI5P; PIP4K; Receptor tyrosine kinase signaling.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cell Membrane
  • Endosomes
  • Phosphates
  • Phosphatidylinositols*
  • Signal Transduction*


  • Phosphates
  • Phosphatidylinositols