Navigation Links
Scripps Florida scientists identify critical 'quality control' for cell growth
Date:7/5/2012

JUPITER, FL, July 5, 2012 Scientists from the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute have identified a series of intricate biochemical steps that lead to the successful production of proteins, the basic working units of any cell.

The study, which appears in the July 6, 2012 edition of the journal Cell, sheds light on the assembly of a structure called the ribosome, a large and complex protein-producing machine inside all living cells. Ribosomes are the targets of many commercially used antibiotics and represent a promising area of research because of the importance of ribosome assembly and function for cell growth. There are well-established links between defects in ribosome assembly and cancer, making this pathway a potential new target for anti-cancer drugs.

"With important cellular machines like ribosomes, it makes sense that some process exists to make sure things work correctly," said Katrin Karbstein, a Scripps Research associate professor who led the study. "We've shown that such a quality control function exists for ribosomal subunits that use the system to do a test run but don't produce a protein. If the subunits don't pass, there are mechanisms to discard them."

Protein Production Line

As part of the protein-production process called "translation," the ribosome decodes information carried in messenger RNA (mRNA) to produce a proteina chain of amino acids.

To produce mature, functioning ribosomal RNAs (rRNAs), the body first makes precursor rRNAs that can be processed into mature ones. In human cells, this is done in two stagesthe first occurs in the nucleolus, a protein-nucleic acid structure inside the nucleus, and finally in the cytoplasm, the basic cellular stew where protein translation occurs.

In the cytoplasm, these pre-mature ribosomal subunits encounter large pools of mature subunits, messenger RNA, and numerous assembly factors and translation factors that help complete the process.

During the final maturation process, various assembly factors prevent the translation process from acting on the subunits prematurely, which would result in their rapid degradation or in the production of incorrectly assembled proteins, both processes with potentially lethal outcomes for the cell.

Trial Run

While the work of these assembly factors explains how premature translation is blocked, their presence raises another important question, Karbstein saidDoes the conversion of inactive assembly intermediates into mature ribosomes require checkpoints to assure that subunits are functional?

In the study, Karbstein and her colleagues were able to show that during this translation-like cycle the newly made ribosome subunit initially joins with its complementary preexisting subunit to form a much larger complex through the influence of a single translation factor.

This large ribosome complex contains no messenger RNA, which is blocked by assembly factors, and thus produces no protein. Once the major functions of the smaller ribosome subunit have been inspected and approved, another translation factor breaks up the complex and actual protein production occurs.

"What is important here is that the test cycle involves the same translational factors that are involved in normal translation," Karbstein said. "It's the most elegant and efficient way to produce perfect ribosomes."

Interestingly, the study noted, the majority of assembly factors involved in this translation-like test cycle are conserved in creatures ranging from one-celled organisms to humans, suggesting that this evolutionary mechanism is common to all.


'/>"/>

Contact: Mika Ono
mikaono@scripps.edu
Scripps Research Institute
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. Scripps Research Institute Scientists Develop Alternative to Gene Therapy
2. Scripps Research Institute announces five-year research collaboration with Bristol-Myers Squibb
3. Esther B. OKeeffe Foundation gives $2 million to the Scripps Research Institute
4. Scripps Florida scientists awarded $8.4 million grant to develop new anti-smoking treatments
5. Plastic trash altering ocean habitats, Scripps study shows
6. Scripps Florida scientists identify neurotranmitters that lead to forgetting
7. Scripps Florida scientist awarded $1.5 million to design therapeutics with new RNA approach
8. Scripps research scientists find anticonvulsant drug helps marijuana smokers kick the habit
9. Scientist wins $3 million renewal of one of longest-running NIH grants to Scripps Research
10. Scripps Research Institute scientists develop antidote for cocaine overdose
11. Scripps Research Institute Professor Gerald F. Joyce elected to American Academy of Arts & Sciences
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Scripps Florida scientists identify critical 'quality control' for cell growth
(Date:2/2/2016)... 2, 2016 This BCC Research report ... by reviewing the recent advances in high throughput ... the field forward. Includes forecast through 2019. ... challenges and opportunities that exist in the bioinformatic ... developers, as well as IT and bioinformatics service ...
(Date:2/2/2016)... Va. , Feb. 2, 2016   ... award from the U.S. Army Research Office and ... the range and sensitivity of the company,s ... Past Accounting Mission and, more generally, defense-related DNA ... DNA phenotyping capabilities (predicting appearance and ancestry from ...
(Date:2/1/2016)... -- Today, the first day of American Heart Month, the ... first of its kind workplace health solution that leverages ... first application of Watson to ... Welltok will create a new offering that combines AHA,s ... on Welltok,s health optimization platform. The effort is intended ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/10/2016)... Inc. (NYSE: BIOA ), a leader in renewable ... Ltd., its partner in the Sarnia ... CDN$25 million in the joint venture for 10% of ...  Mitsui will also play a stronger role in the ... , providing dedicated resources alongside BioAmber,s commercial team. ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... Feb.10, 2016 ASAE is introducing a hybrid ... Companies (AMC) the option of joining or renewing through ... determined by staff size, every employee in any size ... and reap all available member benefits.   ... organizational membership options will allow organizations of any size ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... Feb. 10, 2016  Matchbook, Inc., a company ... growing biotech companies, announced today the appointment of ... Advisor. Jim brings nearly 25 years of experience ... having spent nearly two decades in executive level ... Procurement at Genzyme and, most recently headed global ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... ... February 10, 2016 , ... SonaCare Medical, ... and support program, Sonalinkā„¢ remote monitoring. The inaugural launch of this new technology ... 5th, connecting Dr. Samuel Peretsman to a HIFU technical expert at SonaCare Medical ...
Breaking Biology Technology: