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Recognizing a deficiency of indispensable amino acids (IAAs) for protein synthesis is vital for dietary selection in metazoans, including humans. Cells in the brain's anterior piriform cortex (APC) are sensitive to IAA deficiency, signaling diet rejection and foraging for complementary IAA sources, but the mechanism is unknown. Here we report that the(More)
In response to environmental stress, cells induce a program of gene expression designed to remedy cellular damage or, alternatively, induce apoptosis. In this report, we explore the role of a family of protein kinases that phosphorylate eukaryotic initiation factor 2 (eIF2) in coordinating stress gene responses. We find that expression of activating(More)
OBJECTIVE Loss-of-function mutations in Perk (EIF2AK3) result in permanent neonatal diabetes in humans (Wolcott-Rallison Syndrome) and mice. Previously, we found that diabetes associated with Perk deficiency resulted from insufficient proliferation of beta-cells and from defects in insulin secretion. A substantial fraction of PERK-deficient beta-cells(More)
The GCN2 eIF2alpha kinase is essential for activation of the general amino acid control pathway in yeast when one or more amino acids become limiting for growth. GCN2's function in mammals is unknown, but must differ, since mammals, unlike yeast, can synthesize only half of the standard 20 amino acids. To investigate the function of mammalian GCN2, we have(More)
Reperfusion after global brain ischemia results initially in a widespread suppression of protein synthesis in neurons that is due to inhibition of translation initiation as a result of the phosphorylation of the alpha-subunit of eukaryotic initiation factor 2 (eIF2). To address the role of the eIF2alpha kinase RNA-dependent protein kinase-like endoplasmic(More)
BACKGROUND Deficiency of the PERK eIF2 alpha kinase in humans and mice results in postnatal exocrine pancreatic atrophy as well as severe growth and metabolic anomalies in other organs and tissues. To determine if the exocrine pancreatic atrophy is due to a cell-autonomous defect, the Perk gene was specifically ablated in acinar cells of the exocrine(More)
BACKGROUND The ER chaperone GRP78/BiP is a homolog of the Hsp70 family of heat shock proteins, yet GRP78/BiP is not induced by heat shock but instead by ER stress. However, previous studies had not considered more physiologically relevant temperature elevation associated with febrile hyperthermia. In this report we examine the response of GRP78/BiP and(More)
BACKGROUND A deficiency in Perk (EIF2AK3) causes multiple neonatal defects in humans known as the Wolcott Rallison syndrome. Perk KO mice exhibit the same array of defects including permanent neonatal diabetes (PND). PND in mice was previously shown by us to be due to a decrease in beta cell proliferation and insulin secretion. The aim of this study was to(More)
BACKGROUND Insulin synthesis and cell proliferation are under tight regulation in pancreatic β-cells to maintain glucose homeostasis. Dysfunction in either aspect leads to development of diabetes. PERK (EIF2AK3) loss of function mutations in humans and mice exhibit permanent neonatal diabetes that is characterized by insufficient β-cell mass and reduced(More)