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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Separate domains in GCN1 for binding protein kinase GCN2 and ribosomes are required for GCN2 activation in amino acid-starved cells.

GCN2 stimulates GCN4 translation in amino acid-starved cells by phosphorylating the alpha-subunit of translation initiation factor 2. GCN2 function in vivo requires the GCN1/GCN20 complex, which binds to the N-terminal domain of GCN2. A C-terminal segment of GCN1 (residues 2052-2428) was found to be necessary and sufficient for binding GCN2 in vivo and in vitro. Overexpression of this fragment in wild-type cells impaired association of GCN2 with native GCN1 and had a dominant Gcn(-) phenotype, dependent on Arg2259 in the GCN1 fragment. Substitution of Arg2259 with Ala in full-length GCN1 abolished complex formation with native GCN2 and destroyed GCN1 regulatory function. Consistently, the Gcn(-) phenotype of gcn1-R2259A, but not that of gcn1Delta, was suppressed by overexpressing GCN2. These findings prove that GCN2 binding to the C-terminal domain of GCN1, dependent on Arg2259, is required for high level GCN2 function in vivo. GCN1 expression conferred sensitivity to paromomycin in a manner dependent on its ribosome binding domain, supporting the idea that GCN1 binds near the ribosomal acceptor site to promote GCN2 activation by uncharged tRNA.[1]


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