Structure and function of RET in multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2

    1. Iván Plaza-Menacho
    1. Kinases, Protein Phosphorylation and Cancer, Structural Biology Programme, Spanish National Cancer Research Centre (CNIO), Madrid, Spain
    1. Correspondence should be addressed to I Plaza-Menacho: iplaza{at}


    It has been twenty-five years since the discovery of oncogenic germline RET mutations as the cause of multiple endocrine neoplasia type 2 (MEN2). Intensive work over the last two and a half decades on RET genetics, signaling and cell biology has provided the current bases for the genotype–phenotype and functional correlations within this cancer syndrome. On the contrary, the structural and molecular basis for RET tyrosine kinase domain activation and oncogenic deregulation has remained largely elusive. Recent studies with a strong crystallographic and biochemical focus have started to elucidate key insights into such molecular and atomic details revealing unexpected and private mechanisms of actions and molecular determinants not previously envisioned. This review focuses on the structure and function of the RET receptor, and in particular, on what a more detailed view of the protein itself and what the current structural and molecular information tell us about the genotype and phenotype relationships in the cancer syndrome MEN2.

    • Received 21 November 2017
    • Accepted 23 November 2017
    • Made available online as an Accepted Preprint 1 February 2018
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