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Cell. 1977 May;11(1):187-200.

Phosphorylation of initiation factor elF-2 and the control of reticulocyte protein synthesis.


When rabbit reticulocyte lysates are incubated in the absence of hemin or in the presence of low concentrations of double-stranded RNA, the rate of initiation of protein synthesis is severely reduced after a lag period in which control rates are observed. This reduced initiation rate is due to inhibition of the binding of Methionyl-tRNAf to native 40S ribosomal subunits and is caused by a macromolecular inhibitor which is activated under these conditions. This paper shows that the inhibitors activated in these two situations appear to be different entities, but that in both cases, the inhibitor has an associated protein kinase activity which is highly selective for the small subunit of elF-2, the initiation factor which catalyzes binding of Methionyl-tRNAf to 40S subunits. We present several lines of evidence in support of the hypothesis that the phosphorylation of elF-2 by these kinases is basis of the control of initiation in lysates incubated under these conditions.

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