Inhibition of mRNA translation extends lifespan in Caenorhabditis elegans

Aging Cell. 2007 Feb;6(1):111-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1474-9726.2006.00266.x.


Protein synthesis is a regulated cellular process that links nutrients in the environment to organismal growth and development. Here we examine the role of genes that regulate mRNA translation in determining growth, reproduction, stress resistance and lifespan. Translational control of protein synthesis by regulators such as the cap-binding complex and S6 kinase play an important role during growth. We observe that inhibition of various genes in the translation initiation complex including ifg-1, the worm homologue of eIF4G, which is a scaffold protein in the cap-binding complex; and rsks-1, the worm homologue of S6 kinase, results in lifespan extension in Caenorhabditis elegans. Inhibition of ifg-1 or rsks-1 also slows development, reduces fecundity and increases resistance to starvation. A reduction in ifg-1 expression in dauers was also observed, suggesting an inhibition of protein translation during the dauer state. Thus, mRNA translation exerts pleiotropic effects on growth, reproduction, stress resistance and lifespan in C. elegans.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Caenorhabditis elegans / genetics*
  • Caenorhabditis elegans / growth & development
  • Caenorhabditis elegans / metabolism*
  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins / biosynthesis*
  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins / genetics
  • Eukaryotic Initiation Factor-4G
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental / genetics*
  • Growth / genetics
  • Immunity, Innate / genetics
  • Longevity / genetics*
  • Peptide Fragments / genetics
  • Peptide Initiation Factors / genetics
  • Protein Biosynthesis / genetics*
  • Reproduction / genetics
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases / genetics
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 70-kDa / biosynthesis*
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 70-kDa / genetics
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins
  • Stress, Physiological / genetics
  • Survival Rate


  • Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins
  • Eukaryotic Initiation Factor-4G
  • Peptide Fragments
  • Peptide Initiation Factors
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins
  • TIF4631 protein, S cerevisiae
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 70-kDa
  • Rsks-1 protein, C elegans