Ubiquitin-like protein that can be covalently attached to proteins as a monomer or a lysine-linked polymer. Covalent attachment via an isopeptide bond to its substrates requires prior activation by the E1 complex SAE1-SAE2 and linkage to the E2 enzyme UBE2I, and can be promoted by E3 ligases such as PIAS1-4, RANBP2 or CBX4. This post-translational modification on lysine residues of proteins plays a crucial role in a number of cellular processes such as nuclear transport, DNA replication and repair, mitosis and signal transduction. Involved for instance in targeting RANGAP1 to the nuclear pore complex protein RANBP2. Polymeric SUMO1 chains are also susceptible to polyubiquitination which functions as a signal for proteasomal degradation of modified proteins. May also regulate a network of genes involved in palate development.