GPCRs (G-protein coupled receptors) are a diverse family of seven transmembrane spanning receptors that play in an important role in a eukaryotic cell's ability to sense external molecules or stimuli, including light. GPCRs are present in plants, animals, and fungi, and perform a vast array of diverse functions. Signaling of GPCRs occurs through receptor changes that initiate signaling by G-proteins, subsequently acting on downstream proteins including PI3K, MAPK, PLC, AKT and Rho. Depending on the signal and the receptor responding to that signal, the end results of signaling can be widely varied, including cell growth, migration, activation, and much more.
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