Importin subunit beta-1(KPNB1) is a member of the importin beta family. KPNB1 contains 1 importin N-terminal domain and 19 HEAT repeats. It is involved in nucleocytoplasmic transport, a signal- and energy-dependent process, takes place through nuclear pore complexes embedded in the nuclear envelope. Its functions in nuclear protein import, either in association with an adapter protein, like an importin-alpha subunit, which binds to nuclear localization signals (NLS) in cargo substrates, or by acting as autonomous nuclear transport receptor. The import of proteins containing a classical nuclear localization signal (NLS) requires the NLS import receptor, a heterodimer of importin alpha and beta subunits. Each of these subunits is part of the karyopherin family of proteins. Importin alpha binds the NLS-containing cargo in the cytoplasm and importin beta docks the complex at the cytoplasmic side of the nuclear pore complex. It mediates autonomously the nuclear import of ribosomal proteins RPL23A, RPS7 and RPL5.