Keratins are intermediate filament-forming proteins that provide mechanical support and fulfill a variety of additional functions in epithelial cells. In 1982, a nomenclature was devised to name the keratin proteins that were known at that point. The systematic sequencing of the human genome in recent years uncovered the existence of several novel keratin genes and their encoded proteins. Their naming could not be adequately handled in the context of the original system. We propose a new consensus nomenclature for keratin genes and proteins that relies upon and extends the 1982 system and adheres to the guidelines issued by the Human and Mouse Genome Nomenclature Committees. This revised nomenclature accommodates functional genes and pseudogenes, and although designed specifically for the full complement of human keratins, it offers the flexibility needed to incorporate additional keratins from other mammalian species.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology