P. Cohen, C.F.B. Holmes, Y. Tsukitani, "Okadaic acid: a new probe for the study of cellular regulation, Trends in Biochemical Sciences, 15:98-102,1990

Philip Cohen (MRC Protein Phosphorylation Group, University of Dundee, Scotland): "Okadaic acid is a complex fatty acid polyketal, produced by marine microorganisms, that accumulates in the digestive glands of shellfish and marine sponges. It is the cause of diarrhetic seafood poisoning and is also a potent tumor promoter.

"In 1987, Akira Takai, working in J.C. Ruegg's laboratory in Germany [University of Heidelberg], found that okadaic acid stimulated the contraction of skinned smooth muscle by inhibiting the dephosphorylation of myosin. Subsequently, he showed that okadaic acid is a potent inhibitor of protein phosphatases 1 and 2A, structurally related enzymes that are two of the major protein serine/threonine phosphatases of eukaryotic cells.

"Subsequent work carried out in my laboratory, and in collaboration with other investigators, revealed that okadaic acid is...

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