Nerve growth factor specifically stimulates translation of eukaryotic elongation factor 1A-1 (eEF1A-1) mRNA by recruitment to polyribosomes in PC12 cells.
During postnatal brain development the level of peptide elongation factor-1A (eEF1A-1) expression declines and that of the highly homologous isoform, eEF1A-2, increases in neurons. eEF1A-1 is implicated in cytoskeletal interactions, tumorigenesis, differentiation, and the absence of eEF1A-2 is implicated in neurodegeneration in the mouse mutant, wasted. The translation of eEF1A-1 mRNA is up-regulated via mitogenic stimulation. However, it is not known if eEF1A-1 mRNA translation is regulated by neurotrophins or if its synthesis is differentially regulated than that of the neuronal isoform, eEF1A-2. Regulated translation of these factors by neurotrophins, particularly by the Trk class of neurotrophin receptors, would implicate them in differentiation, survival, and neuronal plasticity. In this study, we investigated the effect of nerve growth factor (NGF) stimulation on the synthesis of eEF1A-1 and eEF1A-2. We found that NGF stimulation causes a preferential synthesis of eEF1A-1 over eEF1A-2 in PC12 cells. We analyzed the co-sedimentation of eEF1A-1 mRNA with polyribosome fractions in sucrose gradients, and found that NGF stimulation enriched the presence of eEF1A-1 mRNA in polyribosomes, indicating that the translation of eEF1A-1 mRNA is regulated by NGF. Inhibitors of phosphatidylinositol 3-kinase (LY 294002), mammalian target of rapamycin (rapamycin), and the NGF receptor, TrkA (K-252a), but not of mitogen-activated protein kinase (PD 98059), prevented the recruitment of eEF1A-1 mRNA to polyribosomes. The mobilization of eEF1A-1 mRNA to polyribosomes was rapamycin-sensitive in both proliferating and differentiated PC12 cells, indicating the importance of this pathway during differentiation. Our data shows that after growth factor withdrawal, an NGF-signaling pathway stimulates eEF1A-1 mRNA translation in proliferating and differentiated PC12 cells. Therefore, eEF1A-1 mRNA is a specific translational target of TrkA signaling.
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