The Tec family tyrosine kinases regulate lymphocyte development, activation, and differentiation. In T cells, the predominant Tec kinase is Itk, which functions downstream of the T-cell receptor to regulate phospholipase C-γ. This review highlights recent advances in our understanding of Itk kinase structure and enzymatic regulation, focusing on Itk protein domain interactions and mechanisms of substrate recognition. We also discuss the role of Itk in the development of conventional versus innate T-cell lineages, including both αβ and γδ T-cell subsets. Finally, we describe the complex role of Itk signaling in effector T-cell differentiation and the regulation of cytokine gene expression. Together, these data implicate Itk as an important modulator of T-cell signaling and function.
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/amy_andreotti/13/