Interplay Between GCN2 and GCN4 Expression, Translation Elongation Factor 1 Mutations and Translational Fidelity in Yeast

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Nucleic Acids Research

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Genetic screens in Saccharomyces cerevisiae have identified the roles of ribosome components, tRNAs and translation factors in translational fidelity. These screens rely on the suppression of altered start codons, nonsense codons or frameshift mutations in genes involved in amino acid or nucleotide metabolism. Many of these genes are regulated by the General Amino Acid Control (GAAC) pathway. Upon amino acid starvation, the kinase GCN2 induces the GAAC cascade via increased translation of the transcriptional activator GCN4 controlled by upstream open reading frames (uORFs). Overexpression of the GCN2 or GCN4 genes enhances the sensitivity of translation fidelity assays that utilize genes regulated by GCN4, such as the suppression of a +1 insertion by S.cerevisiae translation elongation factor 1A (eEF1A) mutants. Paromomycin and the prion [PSI+], which reduce translational fidelity, do not increase GCN4 expression to induce the suppression phenotype and in fact reduce derepression. eEF1A mutations that reduce translation, however, reduce expression of GCN4 under non-starvation conditions. These eEF1A mutants also reduce HIS4 mRNA expression. Taken together, this system improves in vivo strategies for the analysis of translational fidelity and further provides new information on the interplay among translation fidelity, altered elongation and translational control via uORFs.


This article was originally published as Magazinnik, T., Anand, M., Sattlegger, E., Hinnebusch, A.G., and Kinzy, T.G (2005) Interplay between GCN2 and GCN4 expression, translation Elongation Factor 1 mutations, and translational fidelity in yeast. Nuc. Acids Res. 33: 4584-4592. PMC1185573.