Tiny protein has big impact in times of stress

Credit: CC0 Public Domain

Ribosomes churn out proteins that carry out all of life's functions, but when missing a key and previously overlooked factor, they can break down in times of stress, Yale University scientists have discovered. 

The protein, Lso2/CCDC124, is so tiny—just 92 amino acids—it did not turn up under search parameters used by most scientists studying . But the Yale team, headed by Wendy Gilbert, professor of and biochemistry, found that without it ribosomal function in yeast was disrupted in times of stress.

"The protein is crucial in some conditions, but not in others," Gilbert said. The is conserved in all species including humans, but an overabundance in liver cancer patients has been linked to decreased survival time. "The exciting challenge now is to understand how this disturbance in fundamental cell machinery leads to a bad prognosis in cancer," she said.

Yale's Yinuo J. Wang is first author of the research published Sept. 12 in the journal PLOS Biology.

Explore further

Key to expanding genetic code described

More information: Yinuo J. Wang et al. Lso2 is a conserved ribosome-bound protein required for translational recovery in yeast, PLOS Biology (2018). DOI: 10.1371/journal.pbio.2005903
Journal information: PLoS Biology

Provided by Yale University
Citation: Tiny protein has big impact in times of stress (2018, September 14) retrieved 19 September 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-09-tiny-protein-big-impact-stress.html
This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.

Feedback to editors

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more