VRK2: Human vaccinia related kinase 2
PDB Code: 2V62
VRK2 belongs together with VRK1 and VRK3 to the vaccinia related kinase (VRK) protein family, which is characterized by notable sequence homology to the vaccinia virus-encoded B1 kinase (vvB1). Two alternative spliced forms of VRK2 (VRK2A and VRK2B) have been described in human. This kinase is widely expressed with particularly high expression levels detected in human fetal liver, skeletal muscle, pancreas, heart, peripheral blood leukocytes and testis. Interestingly, VRK1 and VRK2 phosphorylate p53 on Thr18 resulting in p53 stabilization. In addition, VRK2 has been described to interact with the Epstein-Barr virus protein BHRF1, a structural and functional homolog to the anti-apoptotic protein Bcl-2 and formation of the VRK2-BHRF21 complex results in protecting cells from apoptosis.
In contrast to VRK3, VRK2 is an active kinase which rapidly auto-phosphorylates in vitro and recognizes a number of generic kinases substrates. Here we present the apo-structure of VRK2 at 1.7 Å resolution.

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