2Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia, 117198 Moscow, Russia
3Lomonosov Moscow State University, 119991 Moscow, Russia
* To whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received June 24, 2017; Revision received July 17, 2017
Microtubules are components of eukaryotic cytoskeleton that are involved in the transport of various components from the nucleus to the cell periphery and back. They also act as a platform for assembly of complex molecular ensembles. Ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complexes, such as ribosomes and mRNPs, are transported over significant distances (e.g. to neuronal processes) along microtubules. The association of RNPs with microtubules and their transport along these structures are essential for compartmentalization of protein biosynthesis in cells. Microtubules greatly facilitate assembly of stress RNP granules formed by accumulation of translation machinery components during cell stress response. Microtubules are necessary for the cytoplasm-to-nucleus transport of proteins, including ribosomal proteins. At the same time, ribosomal proteins and RNA-binding proteins can influence cell mobility and cytoplasm organization by regulating microtubule dynamics. The molecular mechanisms underlying the association between the translation machinery components and microtubules have not been studied systematically; the results of such studies are mostly fragmentary. In this review, we attempt to fill this gap by summarizing and discussing the data on protein and RNA components of the translation machinery that directly interact with microtubules or microtubule motor proteins.
KEY WORDS: ribosome, polysome, mRNP, mRNA, kinesin, dynein, stress granule