Regulation by Amino Acids of Protein Synthesis in a Cell-Free System from Immature Rat Brain: Stimulatory Effect of γ-Aminobutyric Acid and Glycine

  • Claude F. Baxter
  • Sujata Tewari


There are several steps along the metabolic pathways of protein synthesis and degradation which can be regulated, directly or indirectly, by substances of low molecular weight. These include reactions at the operon level, where transcription of DNA into RNA may be affected,(1) and reactions at the substrate level, where the overabundance or short supply of a specific amino acid may act as a regulatory factor.(2–4) Recent data which hint at an interrelationship between neurochemical transmitter substances and protein metabolism(5,6) are of particular physiological interest. If acetylcholine, catecholamines, γ-aminobutyric acid (GABA), or any other potential neurochemical transmitter were to modify protein metabolism at or near nerve endings, one could envision numerous mechanisms by which the repeated use of a specific neuronal pathway would lead initially to changes in the local rate of protein synthesis, and, subsequently, perhaps, to an alteration in the “connectivity” or conductivity of these or adjacent neuronal pathways. The mechanisms would be similar to some that have been proposed to explain certain aspects of learning and habituation.(7)


Amino Acid Mixture Label Amino Acid Leucine Incorporation Amino Acid Substrate Amino Acid Incorporation 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1970

Authors and Affiliations

  • Claude F. Baxter
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
  • Sujata Tewari
    • 1
  1. 1.Neurochemistry LaboratoriesVeterans Administration HospitalSepulvedaUSA
  2. 2.Division of NeurosciencesCity of Hope Medical CenterDuarteUSA
  3. 3.Department of PhysiologyUCLA School of MedicineLos AngelesUSA

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