The Nuclear Pore Complex: Birth, Life, and Death of a Cellular Behemoth

Elisa Dultz, Matthias Wojtynek, Ohad Medalia, Evgeny Onischenko

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


Nuclear pore complexes (NPCs) are the only transport channels that cross the nuclear envelope. Constructed from ~500–1000 nucleoporin proteins each, they are among the largest macromolecular assemblies in eukaryotic cells. Thanks to advances in structural analysis approaches, the construction principles and architecture of the NPC have recently been revealed at submolecular resolution. Although the overall structure and inventory of nucleoporins are conserved, NPCs exhibit significant compositional and functional plasticity even within single cells and surprising variability in their assembly pathways. Once assembled, NPCs remain seemingly unexchangeable in post-mitotic cells. There are a number of as yet unresolved questions about how the versatility of NPC assembly and composition is established, how cells monitor the functional state of NPCs or how they could be renewed. Here, we review current progress in our understanding of the key aspects of NPC architecture and lifecycle.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1456
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1 May 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Brl1
  • FG repeats
  • NPC
  • Ran
  • ageing
  • aggregation
  • amphipathic helix
  • assembly factor
  • autophagy
  • lipids
  • membrane fusion
  • neurodegneration
  • nuclear pore complex
  • nuclear transport receptor
  • nucleoporin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology


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