Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 28298488
Mol. Biol. Cell 2017 May;28(9):1165-1176
Protein quality control mechanisms eliminate defective polypeptides to ensure proteostasis and to avoid the toxicity of protein aggregates. In eukaryotes, the ribosome-bound quality control (RQC) complex detects aberrant nascent peptides that remain stalled in 60S ribosomal particles due to a dysfunction in translation termination. The RQC complex polyubiquitylates aberrant polypeptides and recruits a Cdc48 hexamer to extract them from 60S particles in order to escort them to the proteasome for degradation. Whereas the steps from stalled 60S recognition to aberrant peptide polyubiquitylation by the RQC complex have been described, the mechanism leading to proteasomal degradation of these defective translation products remains unknown. We show here that the RQC complex also exists as a ribosome-unbound complex during the escort of aberrant peptides to the proteasome. In addition, we identify a new partner of this light version of the RQC complex, the E3 ubiquitin ligase Tom1. Tom1 interacts with aberrant nascent peptides and is essential to limit their accumulation and aggregation in the absence of Rqc1; however, its E3 ubiquitin ligase activity is not required. Taken together, these results reveal new roles for Tom1 in protein quality control, aggregate prevention, and, therefore, proteostasis maintenance.