Dynein: An Ancient Motor Protein Involved in Multiple Modes of Transport

Richard B. Vallee*, John C. Williams, Dileep Varma, Lora E. Barnhart

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

335 Scopus citations


Cytoplasmic dynein has long been thought to be responsible for retrograde axonal transport. As the number of cellular roles for this multifunctional protein has expanded, the complexity of its contribution to axonal transport has increased. In this article the increasing evidence for a role for cytoplasmic dynein in anterograde as well as retrograde transport is discussed. The current status of the complex dynein cargo-binding mechanism is evaluated. Finally, recent genetic evidence supporting a role in axonal transport and revealing a role in neurodegenerative conditions is reviewed.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)189-200
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Neurobiology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 5 2004


  • AAA ATPase
  • Dynactin
  • Dynein
  • Microtubule
  • Motor protein
  • Neurofilament
  • Retrograde transport

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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