Table of Contents
Journal of Signal Transduction
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 297868, 23 pages
Review Article

Itk: The Rheostat of the T Cell Response

Department of Biology, San Diego State University, San Diego, CA 92182-4614, USA

Received 2 December 2010; Accepted 19 January 2011

Academic Editor: Fred Schaper

Copyright © 2011 Juris A. Grasis and Constantine D. Tsoukas. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The nonreceptor tyrosine kinase Itk plays a key role in TCR-initiated signaling that directly and significantly affects the regulation of PLCγ1 and the consequent mobilization of Ca2+. Itk also participates in the regulation of cytoskeletal reorganization as well as cellular adhesion, which is necessary for a productive T cell response. The functional cellular outcome of these molecular regulations by Itk renders it an important mediator of T cell development and differentiation. This paper encompasses the structure of Itk, the signaling parameters leading to Itk activation, and Itk effects on molecular pathways resulting in functional cellular outcomes. The incorporation of these factors persuades one to believe that Itk serves as a modulator, or rheostat, critically fine-tuning the T cell response.