Editors' ChoiceRNA-BINDING PROTEINS

Linking Cholesterol Synthesis to Reproduction

Science's STKE  13 Apr 2004:
Vol. 2004, Issue 228, pp. tw131-TW131
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2282004TW131

Nair and Menon report that mevalonate kinase, an enzyme involved in cholesterol biosynthesis, binds to the mRNA for luteinizing hormone receptor (LHR). An LHR mRNA-binding protein from rat ovary was purified and subjected to sequence analysis, which identified the protein as mevalonate kinase. The authors had previously shown that binding of this protein to LHR mRNA promoted its degradation. Gel-shift assays with either antibodies against mevalonate kinase or with recombinant mevalonate kinase showed that mevalonate kinase bound to the LHR mRNA. Both mevalonate and adenosine triphosphate inhibited binding of mevalonate kinase to the LHR mRNA in gel-shift assays. Cholesterol is the precursor for steroidogenic hormones, the synthesis of which is stimulated by activation of LHR. LHR signaling also stimulates cholesterol uptake and, thus, this interaction between mevalonate kinase and the LHR mRNA may serve to coordinate the metabolic and sexual signaling pathways.

A. K. Nair, K. M. Menon, Isolation and characterization of a novel trans-factor for luteinizing hormone receptor mRNA from ovary. J. Biol. Chem. 279, 14937-14944 (2004). [Abstract] [Full Text]