There is growing evidence that PEST sequences act as proteolytic recognition signals within polypeptides. PEST sequences are rich in proline (P), glutamic acid (E), serine (S), and threonine (T) and can be identified by the PEST-FIND program. Both the catalytic and regulatory subunits of the cAMP-dependent protein kinase have been shown to have conditional PEST sequences which are exposed upon cAMP binding to the enzyme. cAMP binding leads to rapid dissociation of C- and R-subunits, and both subunits have increased sensitivity to proteolysis. It is not known whether other proteins that participate in the cyclic nucleotide signalling pathway have PEST regions in their amino acid sequences. Therefore, we have screened amino acid sequences of proteins that are directly involved in cyclic nucleotide cascade, including cGMP-dependent protein kinases, anchoring proteins for cAMP-dependent protein kinase, cyclic nucleotide-gated ion channels, and cyclic nucleotide phosphodiesterases, for PEST sequences using the PEST-FIND program. Many PEST sequences with high scores have been identified in these proteins. The occurrence of the PEST sequences is very high in proteins involved in cyclic nucleotide signalling pathways (approximately 80%). This value is much higher than the percentage (10%) of PEST sequences that can be found in the primary structures of the proteins listed in the data bank. This frequent occurrence of PEST sequences in proteins involved in cyclic nucleotide action and metabolism suggests an important role of proteolysis of these key proteins of signal transduction.