Janus kinase-3 (JAK3), a tyrosine kinase, is expressed in a variety of tissues, including the brain and is involved in the signaling of cytokine receptors. JAK3 participates in numerous functions, such as cell survival and proliferation, neuroprotection, apoptosis and the cellular response to hypoxia and ischemia-reperfusion. This kinase further contributes to the signaling of hematopoietic cell cytokine receptors, activation of dendritic cells, maturation, and immune suppression as well as to cell volume regulation. Recently, JAK3 has been demonstrated to be an important regulator of transport processes across the plasma membrane. Either directly or indirectly JAK3 affects the expression of transport proteins, including various ion channels, a number of cellular carriers and the Na+/K+ pump. More specifically, JAK3 is involved in the regulation of various potassium, sodium, and chloride ion channels, a wide variety of Na+-coupled cellular carriers including the high-affinity Na+ coupled glucose transporter SGLT1, the excitatory amino acid transporters EAAT1, EAAT2, EAAT3 and EAAT4, the peptide transporters PepT1 and PepT2, CreaT1 and theNa+/K+-ATPase. Via these transporters this kinase plays a role in various physiological and pathophysiological processes. Additional research is needed to investigate the effects of JAK3 on other cellular transporters and the underlying mechanisms.
Keywords: JAK3, JAK-STAT, cellular transport, ion channels, membrane carriers, Na+/K+-ATPase.