Research Highlight - Lysine acetyltransferase NuA4 and acetyl-CoA regulate glucose-deprived stress granule formation in yeast

Posted on Wednesday, March 29, 2017

In response to environmental stress, such as nutrient limitations or toxic chemicals, cells must quickly counteract these threats in order to survive. One way cells fight environmental challenges is through the formation of stress granules. Though stress granule formation is essential for survival under multiple conditions, when inappropriately formed they become causative for diseases such as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and fragile X syndrome. Further stress granules contribute to chemotherapy resistance of cancer cells by promoting survival. Therefore it is critical to understand how stress granules are formed and disassembled. A recent study in PLoS Genetics, led by Drs. Kristin Baetz (OISB), Morgan Fullerton (BMI) and Jocelyn Côté (CMM) and using the budding yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, determined that an enzyme called NuA4 is contributing to stress granule formation upon glucose deprivation. The group also determined that Tip60, the equivalent of NuA4 in mammalian cells, is also regulating stress granule formation in cancer cells. As there is a growing number of drugs that target Tip60 and this class of enzyme, there is the possibility that these drugs may reduce stress granule formation offering a novel therapeutic approach to treat numerous diseases.  

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