Background: Protein kinases are enzymes that transfer a phosphate group from a phosphate donor, generally the g phosphate of ATP, onto an acceptor amino acid in a substrate protein. By this basic mechanism, protein kinases mediate most of the signal transduction in eukaryotic cells, regulating cellular metabolism, transcription, cell cycle progression, cytoskeletal rearrangement and cell movement, apoptosis, and differentiation. With more than 500 gene products, the protein kinase family is one of the largest families of proteins in eukaryotes. The family has been classified in 8 major groups based on sequence comparison of their tyrosine (PTK) or serine/threonine (STK) kinase catalytic domains. The tyrosine kinase (TK) group is mainly involved in the regulation of cell-cell interactions such as differentiation, adhesion, motility and death. There are currently about 90 TK genes sequenced, 58 are of receptor protein TK (e.g. EGFR, EPH, FGFR, PDGFR, TRK, and VEGFR families), and 32 of cytosolic TK (e.g. ABL, FAK, JAK, and SRC families).