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

Rab7 prevents growth factor-independent survival by inhibiting cell-autonomous nutrient transporter expression.

Growth factor withdrawal results in the endocytosis and degradation of transporter proteins for glucose and amino acids. Here, we show that this process is under the active control of the small GTPase Rab7. In the presence of growth factor, Rab7 inhibition had no effect on nutrient transporter expression. In growth factor-deprived cells, however, blocking Rab7 function prevented the clearance of glucose and amino acid transporter proteins from the cell surface. When Rab7 was inhibited, growth factor deprived cells maintained their mitochondrial membrane potential and displayed prolonged, growth factor-independent, nutrient-dependent cell survival. Thus, Rab7 functions as a proapoptotic protein by limiting cell-autonomous nutrient uptake. Consistent with this, dominant-negative Rab7 cooperated with E1A to promote the transformation of p53(-/-) mouse embryonic fibroblasts (MEFs). These results suggest that proteins that limit nutrient transporter expression function to prevent cell-autonomous growth and survival.[1]


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