Special Issue: Call for papers on the allosteric regulation of kinase activity

Submit to eLife’s latest Special Issue addressing mechanistic aspects of kinase activity in physiological and pathophysiological processes.

Phosphorylation plays a central role in all aspects of cellular biology, from transferring information across the plasma membrane to the regulation of transcriptional programs. The bewildering complexity of the sheer number of similar enzymes within kinase families with different biological functions prevented the detailed understanding of signalling processes for a long time.

Breakthrough discoveries of how asymmetry in dimeric complexes, the formation of hetero-complexes, autoinhibitory mechanisms and conformational plasticity induced by different interaction partners result in differences in the enzymatic activity towards specific target molecules have increased our understanding of the mechanisms that regulate the activity of kinases. These discoveries have also shed light onto the question of how activation of individual members of the same kinase family can trigger different signalling events. Similarly, detailed biochemical characterisation has revealed how dimerisation and allosteric modulation are central for understanding how (BRAF) inhibitors trigger paradoxical kinase activation and how allosteric inhibitors can provide specificity in inhibiting kinases, despite all of them using ATP as a substrate. Beyond the sole enzymatic activity, kinases also function as scaffolds that organise signalling complexes, which is in particular evident from the role that pseudokinases play in many diseases.

To highlight advances in our understanding of the regulation of kinase activity in physiological and pathophysiological processes, eLife invites submissions to a Special Issue addressing mechanistic aspects of this exciting topic.

Areas that will be considered include:

  • Regulation of receptor tyrosine kinase activity by different ligands
  • Role of dimerisation and multimerisation in activation
  • Kinases as scaffolds and the role of pseudokinases
  • Autoinhibitory mechanism and domain-domain interactions
  • Allosteric activation/inhibition
  • Mechanism of kinase activation by mutations in cancer
  • Mechanism of kinase inhibitors
  • Kinase-phosphatase interaction
  • Modelling of activation mode: switch vs rheostat

Editors for the Allosteric Regulation of Kinase Activity Special Issue

eLife Senior Editors Volker Dötsch, Goethe University, and Amy H Andreotti, Iowa State University
eLife Senior Editors Volker Dötsch, Goethe University, and Amy H Andreotti, Iowa State University

eLife Senior Editors Volker Dötsch, Goethe University, and Amy H Andreotti, Iowa State University, will oversee the manuscripts submitted to the Special Issue, alongside:

eLife Reviewing Editors:

  • Martin Eilers, University of Würzburg
  • Maddy Parsons, King's College London

Guest Editors:

  • Sierra Cullati, Vanderbilt University
  • Kathleen Gould, Vanderbilt University
  • Natalia Jura, University of California, San Francisco
  • Stefan Knapp, Goethe University
  • James Murphy, The Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research
  • Takeo Saneyoshi, Kyoto University

Article types

Submissions of Research Articles, Short Reports, Tools and Resources, and Research Advances are welcomed to the Special Issue. A select number of Review Articles will be commissioned by the editors.

Details about eLife's article types are available here.

About eLife

eLife is an interdisciplinary journal where active researchers handle all editorial decisions. We don’t artificially limit the number of articles we publish or have a set acceptance rate.

Rather, we rely on the judgement of the working researchers who serve as our editors to select papers for peer review and publication.

Peer review

Our goal is to make peer review faster (by reducing rounds of revisions), fairer and more open.

Editors and reviewers discuss their reviews with each other before reaching a decision on a manuscript. Extra experiments, analyses, or data collection are only requested if they are essential and can be reasonably completed within about two months.

More details about eLife’s unique peer-review process are available here.

Public review

To make results freely and immediately available to the widest possible audience, we ask authors submitting to eLife to also upload their manuscript to a preprint server such as bioRxiv or medRxiv.

Our goal is to exclusively review papers that have been posted as a preprint, and authors will be asked to post a preprint if their paper is encouraged for in-depth peer review.

As we are dedicated to making science as open and accessible as possible, we are moving to a framework of publishing where reviews are published publicly alongside every preprint. You can find out more about the "publish, review, curate" model for publishing, in this Editorial.

Submit to the Special Issue

Authors interested in being part of this Special Issue can submit their manuscripts via eLife’s submission system.

All authors should include a cover letter in their submission, highlighting that the paper is for consideration in this Special Issue and suggesting editors from the list above.

Papers will be published online when they’re ready.

Submissions to the Special Issue close on April 30, 2023.


We welcome comments or questions from researchers as well as other journals. Please annotate publicly on the article or contact us at hello [at] elifesciences [dot] org.

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