The mammalian target of rapamycin complex 1 (mTORC1) is the key signalling hub that regulates cellular protein homeostasis, growth and proliferation. Herein, we demonstrate that amino acid arginine acts independent of its metabolism to allow maximal activation of mTORC1 by growth factors, via a mechanism that does not involve regulation of mTORC1 localization to lysosomes. Instead, arginine specifically suppresses lysosomal localization of the TSC complex and interaction with its target small GTPase protein, Rheb. By interfering with TSC-Rheb complex, arginine relieves allosteric inhibition of Rheb by TSC. Arginine is the main amino acid sensed by the mTORC1 pathway in several cell types including human embryonic stem cells (hESCs). Together, our data provide evidence that different growth promoting cues cooperate to a greater extent than previously recognized to achieve tight spatial and temporal regulation of mTORC1 signalling.
- Noboru Mizushima, The University of Tokyo, Japan
© 2016, Carroll et al.
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