Translation of stored mRNAs accounts for protein synthesis during the transcriptionally inactive stages of spermatogenesis. A key step in mRNA translation is the assembly of the initiation complex EIF4F, which is regulated by the MTOR (mammalian target of rapamycin) and MNK1/2 (MAP kinase-interacting kinase 1 and 2) pathways. We investigated the expression and activity of regulatory proteins of these pathways in male germ cells at different stages of differentiation. All translation factors analyzed were expressed in germ cells throughout spermatogenesis. However, while EIF4G and PABP1 (poly[A]-binding protein 1) were more abundant in postmeiotic cells, MTOR and its target EIF4EBP1 (4E-BP1) decreased steadily during spermatogenesis. In vivo labeling showed that pachytene spermatocytes display higher rates of protein synthesis, which are partially dependent on MTOR and MNK activity. By contrast, haploid spermatids are characterized by lower levels of protein synthesis, which are independent of the activity of these pathways. Accordingly, MTOR and MNK activity enhanced formation of the EIF4F complex in pachytene spermatocytes but not in round spermatids. Moreover, external cues differentially modulated the activity of these pathways in meiotic and haploid cells. Heat shock decreased MTOR and MNK activity in pachytene spermatocytes, whereas round spermatids were much less sensitive. On the other hand, treatment with the phosphatase inhibitor okadaic acid activated MTOR and MNK in both cell types. These results indicate that translational regulation is differentially dependent on the MTOR and MNK pathways in mouse spermatocytes and spermatids and suggest that the late stages of germ cell differentiation display constitutive assembly of the translation initiation complex.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.
Vol. 83 • No. 4