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Genetics Home Reference: your guide to understanding genetic conditions
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LIMK1

Reviewed March 2008

What is the official name of the LIMK1 gene?

The official name of this gene is “LIM domain kinase 1.”

LIMK1 is the gene's official symbol. The LIMK1 gene is also known by other names, listed below.

What is the normal function of the LIMK1 gene?

The LIMK1 gene provides instructions for making a protein that is highly active in the brain, where it is thought to be involved in the development of nerve cells. Studies suggest that this protein may play an important role in areas of the brain that are responsible for processing visual-spatial information (visuospatial constructive cognition). These parts of the brain are important for visualizing an object as a set of parts and performing tasks such as writing, drawing, constructing models, and assembling puzzles.

Within cells, the LIMK1 protein likely regulates aspects of the cytoskeleton, the structural framework that helps to determine cell shape, size, and movement. The LIMK1 protein helps control the organization of actin filaments, which are long, thin fibers that make up a significant part of the cytoskeleton. Actin filaments are necessary for several normal cellular functions, such as cell division, cell movement (motility), maintenance of cell shape, transport of proteins and other molecules within cells, and chemical signaling between cells.

How are changes in the LIMK1 gene related to health conditions?

cancers - associated with the LIMK1 gene

The LIMK1 protein is produced at unusually high levels (overexpressed) in some cancerous tumors. For example, increased amounts of this protein have been found in a form of skin cancer called melanoma and in cancers of the ovary, lung, breast, and prostate. Researchers believe that high levels of the LIMK1 protein may be associated with changes in the organization of actin filaments and an increased chance that a tumor will invade other tissues.

Williams syndrome - associated with the LIMK1 gene

The LIMK1 gene is located in a region of chromosome 7 that is deleted in people with Williams syndrome. As a result of this deletion, people with this condition are missing one copy of the LIMK1 gene in each cell. Some studies suggest that a loss of this gene contributes to the characteristic problems with visual-spatial tasks (such as writing and drawing) seen in Williams syndrome; however, other studies have not found this connection. Although a deletion of this gene probably affects the development and function of nerve cells in the brain, researchers have not determined how a reduction in the amount of LIMK1 protein could be related to the specific impairments seen in Williams syndrome.

Where is the LIMK1 gene located?

Cytogenetic Location: 7q11.23

Molecular Location on chromosome 7: base pairs 74,083,776 to 74,122,524

The LIMK1 gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 7 at position 11.23.

The LIMK1 gene is located on the long (q) arm of chromosome 7 at position 11.23.

More precisely, the LIMK1 gene is located from base pair 74,083,776 to base pair 74,122,524 on chromosome 7.

See How do geneticists indicate the location of a gene? (http://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/handbook/howgeneswork/genelocation) in the Handbook.

Where can I find additional information about LIMK1?

You and your healthcare professional may find the following resources about LIMK1 helpful.

You may also be interested in these resources, which are designed for genetics professionals and researchers.

What other names do people use for the LIMK1 gene or gene products?

  • LIMK
  • LIMK-1
  • LIMK1_HUMAN
  • LIM kinase
  • LIM kinase 1
  • LIM motif-containing protein kinase

See How are genetic conditions and genes named? (http://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/handbook/mutationsanddisorders/naming) in the Handbook.

What glossary definitions help with understanding LIMK1?

actin ; cancer ; cell ; cell division ; chromosome ; cognition ; cytoskeleton ; deletion ; domain ; gene ; kinase ; melanoma ; motif ; oncogene ; ovary ; prostate ; protein ; syndrome ; tumor

You may find definitions for these and many other terms in the Genetics Home Reference Glossary (http://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/glossary).

References

  • Davila M, Frost AR, Grizzle WE, Chakrabarti R. LIM kinase 1 is essential for the invasive growth of prostate epithelial cells: implications in prostate cancer. J Biol Chem. 2003 Sep 19;278(38):36868-75. Epub 2003 Jun 23. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12821664?dopt=Abstract)
  • Davila M, Jhala D, Ghosh D, Grizzle WE, Chakrabarti R. Expression of LIM kinase 1 is associated with reversible G1/S phase arrest, chromosomal instability and prostate cancer. Mol Cancer. 2007 Jun 8;6:40. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17559677?dopt=Abstract)
  • Gene Review: Williams Syndrome (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK1249)
  • Gray V, Karmiloff-Smith A, Funnell E, Tassabehji M. In-depth analysis of spatial cognition in Williams syndrome: A critical assessment of the role of the LIMK1 gene. Neuropsychologia. 2006;44(5):679-85. Epub 2005 Oct 10. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16216290?dopt=Abstract)
  • Hoogenraad CC, Akhmanova A, Galjart N, De Zeeuw CI. LIMK1 and CLIP-115: linking cytoskeletal defects to Williams syndrome. Bioessays. 2004 Feb;26(2):141-50. Review. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14745832?dopt=Abstract)
  • Meyer-Lindenberg A, Mervis CB, Sarpal D, Koch P, Steele S, Kohn P, Marenco S, Morris CA, Das S, Kippenhan S, Mattay VS, Weinberger DR, Berman KF. Functional, structural, and metabolic abnormalities of the hippocampal formation in Williams syndrome. J Clin Invest. 2005 Jul;115(7):1888-95. Epub 2005 Jun 9. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15951840?dopt=Abstract)
  • Morris CA, Mervis CB. Williams syndrome and related disorders. Annu Rev Genomics Hum Genet. 2000;1:461-84. Review. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11701637?dopt=Abstract)
  • NCBI Gene (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/gene/3984)
  • Rosso S, Bollati F, Bisbal M, Peretti D, Sumi T, Nakamura T, Quiroga S, Ferreira A, Cáceres A. LIMK1 regulates Golgi dynamics, traffic of Golgi-derived vesicles, and process extension in primary cultured neurons. Mol Biol Cell. 2004 Jul;15(7):3433-49. Epub 2004 Apr 16. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15090620?dopt=Abstract)
  • Scott RW, Olson MF. LIM kinases: function, regulation and association with human disease. J Mol Med (Berl). 2007 Jun;85(6):555-68. Epub 2007 Feb 10. Review. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17294230?dopt=Abstract)
  • Stanyon CA, Bernard O. LIM-kinase1. Int J Biochem Cell Biol. 1999 Mar-Apr;31(3-4):389-94. Review. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/10224665?dopt=Abstract)
  • Tassabehji M. Williams-Beuren syndrome: a challenge for genotype-phenotype correlations. Hum Mol Genet. 2003 Oct 15;12 Spec No 2:R229-37. Epub 2003 Sep 2. Review. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12952863?dopt=Abstract)
  • Yoshioka K, Foletta V, Bernard O, Itoh K. A role for LIM kinase in cancer invasion. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 2003 Jun 10;100(12):7247-52. Epub 2003 May 30. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12777619?dopt=Abstract)

 

The resources on this site should not be used as a substitute for professional medical care or advice. Users seeking information about a personal genetic disease, syndrome, or condition should consult with a qualified healthcare professional. See How can I find a genetics professional in my area? (http://ghr.nlm.nih.gov/handbook/consult/findingprofessional) in the Handbook.

 
Reviewed: March 2008
Published: March 30, 2015