Beatriz A. Castilho

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Small bacteriophage Mu transposable elements containing the lac operon structural genes were constructed to facilitate the isolation and use of Mu insertions and lac gene fusions. These mini-Mu elements have selectable genes for either ampicillin or kanamycin resistance and can be used to form both transcriptional and translational lac gene fusions. Some of(More)
Transmissible spongiform encephalopathies are fatal neurodegenerative diseases caused by the conversion of prion protein (PrP(C)) into an infectious isoform (PrP(Sc)). How this event leads to pathology is not fully understood. Here we demonstrate that protein synthesis in neurons is enhanced via PrP(C) interaction with stress-inducible protein 1 (STI1). We(More)
The product of the mouse Imprinted and Ancient gene, IMPACT, is preferentially expressed in neurons. We have previously shown that IMPACT overexpression inhibits the activation of the protein kinase GCN2, which signals amino acid starvation. GCN2 phosphorylates the α-subunit of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2 (eIF2α), resulting in inhibition of(More)
Gir2 is an uncharacterized protein of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, containing a RWD/GI domain. In this work, we report the biophysical characterization of Gir2. His-tagged Gir2, expressed and purified from Escherichia coli, showed an abnormally slow migration on SDS-PAGE. The yeast expressed protein behaves similarly. Using mass spectrometry and peptide mass(More)
The protein kinase Gcn2 is present in virtually all eukaryotes and is of increasing interest due to its involvement in a large array of crucial biological processes. Some of these are universally conserved from yeast to humans, such as coping with nutrient starvation and oxidative stress. In mammals, Gcn2 is important for e.g. long-term memory formation,(More)
The eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2 (eIF2) binds the methionyl-initiator tRNA in a GTP-dependent mode. This complex associates with the 40 S ribosomal particle, which then, with the aid of other factors, binds to the 5' end of the mRNA and migrates to the first AUG codon, where eIF5 promotes GTP hydrolysis, followed by the formation of the 80 S(More)
Chagas' disease is a potentially life-threatening illness caused by the unicellular protozoan parasite Trypanosoma cruzi. It is transmitted to humans by triatomine bugs where T. cruzi multiplies and differentiates in the digestive tract. The differentiation of proliferative and non-infective epimastigotes into infective metacyclic trypomastigotes(More)
The heterotrimeric eukaryotic initiation factor (eIF) 2 binds the initiator methionyl-tRNA in a GTP-dependent mode and delivers it to the 40 S ribosomal subunit. In the present study, we have identified amino acid residues in eIF2beta required for binding to eIF2gamma in yeast. Alteration of six residues in the central region of eIF2beta abolished this(More)
Translational control mediated by phosphorylation of the alpha subunit of the eukaryotic initiation factor 2 (eIF2alpha) is central to stress-induced programs of gene expression. Trypanosomatids, important human pathogens, display differentiation processes elicited by contact with the distinct physiological milieu found in their insect vectors and mammalian(More)
Eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2 (eIF2) has been implicated in the selection of the AUG codon as the start site for eukaryotic translation initiation, since mutations in its three subunits in yeast that allow the recognition of a UUG codon by the anticodon of the initiator Met-tRNAMet have been identified. All such mutations in the beta subunit of(More)