I'm wondering what's the relationship between Kinase, Phosphatase, ATPase (ATP) and GTPase (GTP).

For example, when reading online the impression is created that ATPase is a type of Kinase (?). But I can't find any explicit information about it.


Enzyme names usually refer to the substrate of the enzyme, i.e. the molecule or chemical group that the enzyme targets and then removes or modifies.

Kinases are enzymes that add phosphate groups, usually to other proteins. One of the older enzyme classes that have a more "creative" name. Phosphatases remove phosphate groups.

In signalling pathways, kinases often transduce signals and phosphatases shut them down when their job is finished.

ATPases and GTPases target ATP and GTP respectively and catalyse the removal of one phosphate group by hydrolysis, the product being ADP or GDP. This makes them a type of phosphatase.

Many proteins are ATP/GTPases but have different names because there's a more significant function to name them after. Usually the ATP/GTPase function serves to deliver energy for the main function. Your impression might be caused by an enzyme which is both a kinase and an ATPase because it transfers phosphate groups from ATP to a target protein.

Enzymes that target ADP/GDP and add another phosphate group are called ATP/GTP synthases (rather than kinases).

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