Eukaryotes possess a variety of translational control mechanisms which function in the surveillance of mRNAs, discriminating between normal and aberrant translation elongation and termination, triggering mRNA decay. The three major evolutionarily conserved eukaryotic pathways are No-Go, Non-Stop and Nonsense-Mediated mRNA Decay. Recent findings suggest that stalling of the ribosome, due to mRNA secondary structure or translation into poly(A)-stretches, leads to ribosome collisions which are detected by No-Go/Non-Stop mRNA decay factors. Subsequent ribosome ubiquitination at the interface of two collided ribosomes is considered the signal for mRNA decay. Similarly, translation termination at a premature stop codon is slower than normal, leading to recruitment and activation of nonsense-mediated mRNA decay factors, including SMG1-8-9. Here, we detail new insights into the molecular mechanisms of these pathways.
- Bristol BioDesign Institute