mTORC1 targets the translational repressor 4E-BP2, but not S6 kinase 1/2, to regulate neural stem cell self-renewal in vivo

Cell Rep. 2013 Oct 31;5(2):433-44. doi: 10.1016/j.celrep.2013.09.017. Epub 2013 Oct 17.


The mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) integrates signals important for cell growth, and its dysregulation in neural stem cells (NSCs) is implicated in several neurological disorders associated with abnormal neurogenesis and brain size. However, the function of mTORC1 on NSC self-renewal and the downstream regulatory mechanisms are ill defined. Here, we found that genetically decreasing mTORC1 activity in neonatal NSCs prevented their differentiation, resulting in reduced lineage expansion and aborted neuron production. Constitutive activation of the translational repressor 4E-BP1, which blocked cap-dependent translation, had similar effects and prevented hyperactive mTORC1 induction of NSC differentiation and promoted self-renewal. Although 4E-BP2 knockdown promoted NSC differentiation, p70 S6 kinase 1 and 2 (S6K1/S6K2) knockdown did not affect NSC differentiation but reduced NSC soma size and prevented hyperactive mTORC1-induced increase in soma size. These data demonstrate a crucial role of mTORC1 and 4E-BP for switching on and off cap-dependent translation in NSC differentiation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing
  • Animals
  • Carrier Proteins / metabolism
  • Cell Cycle Proteins
  • Cell Differentiation / drug effects
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Eukaryotic Initiation Factors / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Eukaryotic Initiation Factors / genetics
  • Eukaryotic Initiation Factors / metabolism*
  • Mechanistic Target of Rapamycin Complex 1
  • Mice
  • Monomeric GTP-Binding Proteins / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Monomeric GTP-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • Monomeric GTP-Binding Proteins / metabolism
  • Multiprotein Complexes / metabolism*
  • Neural Stem Cells / cytology
  • Neural Stem Cells / metabolism
  • Neuropeptides / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Neuropeptides / genetics
  • Neuropeptides / metabolism
  • Phosphoproteins / metabolism
  • Phosphorylation / drug effects
  • RNA Interference
  • RNA, Small Interfering / metabolism
  • Ras Homolog Enriched in Brain Protein
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 90-kDa / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 90-kDa / genetics
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 90-kDa / metabolism
  • Sirolimus / pharmacology
  • TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism*


  • Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing
  • Carrier Proteins
  • Cell Cycle Proteins
  • Eif4ebp1 protein, mouse
  • Eif4ebp2 protein, mouse
  • Eukaryotic Initiation Factors
  • Multiprotein Complexes
  • Neuropeptides
  • Phosphoproteins
  • RNA, Small Interfering
  • Ras Homolog Enriched in Brain Protein
  • Rheb protein, mouse
  • TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • Mechanistic Target of Rapamycin Complex 1
  • Ribosomal Protein S6 Kinases, 90-kDa
  • Rps6ka1 protein, mouse
  • ribosomal protein S6 kinase, 90kDa, polypeptide 3
  • Monomeric GTP-Binding Proteins
  • Sirolimus