Neuronal SUMOylation: mechanisms, physiology, and roles in neuronal dysfunction

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)peer-review


Protein SUMOylation is a critically important posttranslational protein modification that participates in nearly all aspects of cellular physiology. In the nearly 20 years since its discovery, SUMOylation has emerged as a major regulator of nuclear function, and more recently, it has become clear that SUMOylation has key roles in the regulation of protein trafficking and function outside of the nucleus. In neurons, SUMOylation participates in cellular processes ranging from neuronal differentiation and control of synapse formation to regulation of synaptic transmission and cell survival. It is a highly dynamic and usually transient modification that enhances or hinders interactions between proteins, and its consequences are extremely diverse. Hundreds of different proteins are SUMO substrates, and dysfunction of protein SUMOylation is implicated in a many different diseases. Here we briefly outline core aspects of the SUMO system and provide a detailed overview of the current understanding of the roles of SUMOylation in healthy and diseased neurons.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1249-85
Number of pages37
JournalPhysiological Reviews
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2014

Bibliographical note

Copyright © 2014 the American Physiological Society.


  • Animals
  • Cell Nucleus
  • Humans
  • Neurons
  • Protein Processing, Post-Translational
  • Sumoylation

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