To respond adequately to oxidative stress, mammalian cells elicit rapid and tightly controlled changes in gene expression patterns. Besides alterations in the subsets of transcribed genes, two posttranscriptional processes prominently influence the oxidant-triggered gene expression programs: mRNA turnover and translation. Here, we review recent progress in our knowledge of the turnover and translation regulatory (TTR) mRNA-binding proteins (RBPs) that influence gene expression in response to oxidative damage. Specifically, we identify oxidant damage-regulated mRNAs that are targets of TTR-RBPs, we review the oxidant-triggered signaling pathways that govern TTR-RBP function, and we examine emerging evidence that TTR-RBP activity is altered with senescence and aging. Given the potent influence of TTR-RBPs upon oxidant-regulated gene expression profiles, we propose that the senescence-associated changes in TTR-RBPs directly contribute to the impaired responses to oxidant damage that characterize cellular senescence and advancing age.
©2008 by Walter de Gruyter Berlin New York