Translational efficiency correlates with longevity, yet its role in lifespan determination remains unclear. Using ribosome profiling, translation efficiency is globally reduced during replicative aging in budding yeast by at least two mechanisms: Firstly, Ssd1 is induced during aging, sequestering mRNAs to P-bodies. Furthermore, Ssd1 overexpression in young cells reduced translation and extended lifespan, while loss of Ssd1 reduced the translational deficit of old cells and shortened lifespan. Secondly, phosphorylation of eIF2α, mediated by the stress kinase Gcn2, was elevated in old cells, contributing to the global reduction in translation without detectable induction of the downstream Gcn4 transcriptional activator. tRNA overexpression activated Gcn2 in young cells and extended lifespan in a manner dependent on Gcn4. Moreover, overexpression of Gcn4 sufficed to extend lifespan in an autophagy-dependent manner in the absence of changes in global translation, indicating that Gcn4-mediated autophagy induction is the ultimate downstream target of activated Gcn2, to extend lifespan.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Microbiology(all)
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)