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Regulation of Poly (A)-Binding Protein Expression in Response to Heat Shock and Recovery

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Title: Regulation of Poly (A)-Binding Protein Expression in Response to Heat Shock and Recovery
Author: Datu, Andrea-Kaye
Department: Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology
Program: Molecular and Cellular Biology
Advisor: Bag, Jnanankur
Abstract: Gene expression at the level of mRNA translation is critical for cells to respond to external signals; it allows changes in protein synthesis without triggering transcription of a new set of genes. Control of mRNA translation and stability is important in several cellular processes including cell growth and differentiation. Thus regulation of the cellular machinery involved in mRNA translation is crucial. Poly (A) binding protein (PABP1), eukaryotic elongation factor 1A (eEF1A) and ribosomal protein S6 (RPS6) are important members of the cellular mRNA translation machinery, the mRNAs that encode these proteins belong to the terminal oligo pyrimidine tract (TOP) containing family. Translation of the TOP mRNAs is regulated by growth signals and usually codes for several proteins involved in mRNA translation. Our laboratory has previously reported up regulation of PABP1 mRNA translation during recovery from heat shock. It was also shown that the terminal oligopyrmidine tract (TOP) cis-element of PABP1 mRNA is responsible for the preferential increase of PABP1 mRNA translation; however the mechanism for achieving this is unknown. In the studies reported here, we showed that translation of eEF1A and RPS6 expression was similarly enhanced during recovery from heat shock. Analyses of samples of in vivo cross linked RNA– protein complexes, immunoprecipitated by ZNF9 antibody, for the presence of specific mRNAs showed that the cellular nucleic acid binding protein ZNF9 binds not only to TOP mRNAs but also mRNA that lack the TOP element such as to β-actin mRNA. To elucidate the mechanism of activation of TOP mRNA translation, as a candidate trans acting factor, siRNA was used to deplete the cellular level of ZNF9 from heat shocked HeLa cells to examine its potential role in stimulation of TOP mRNA translation during recovery from heat shock. Results show that the knock down of ZNF9 disallowed the preferred stimulation of PABP1, eEF1A and RPS6 expression during recovery from heat shock. There was no detectable effect on the constitutive expression of either β-actin or PABP1, eEF1A and RPS6 in exponentially growing HeLa cells. These results suggest that binding of ZNF9 to TOP mRNAs per se does not inhibit translation, but more likely it acts as a general facilitator of mRNA translation. It is possible that modification of the interaction between ZNF9 with other unknown protein factors is responsible for its preferred effect on all three TOP mRNAs studied here. Additionally, results also suggest that a different TOP sequences amongst the observed TOP mRNAs responds similarly to ZNF9.
Date: 2012-09
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