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Highly Accessed Review

The chemokine and chemokine receptor superfamilies and their molecular evolution

Albert Zlotnik1*, Osamu Yoshie2 and Hisayuki Nomiyama3

Author Affiliations

1 Neurocrine Biosciences, Inc., Department of Molecular Medicine, 12790 El Camino Real, San Diego, CA 92130, USA

2 Department of Microbiology, Kinki University School of Medicine, Osaka-Sayama, Osaka 589-8511, Japan

3 Department of Biochemistry, Kumamoto University Medical School, Kumamoto 860-0811, Japan

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Genome Biology 2006, 7:243  doi:10.1186/gb-2006-7-12-243

Published: 29 December 2006

Abstract

The human chemokine superfamily currently includes at least 46 ligands, which bind to 18 functionally signaling G-protein-coupled receptors and two decoy or scavenger receptors. The chemokine ligands probably comprise one of the first completely known molecular superfamilies. The genomic organization of the chemokine ligand genes and a comparison of their sequences between species shows that tandem gene duplication has taken place independently in the mouse and human lineages of some chemokine families. This means that care needs to be taken when extrapolating experimental results on some chemokines from mouse to human.