Abstract

Four stress-sensing kinases phosphorylate the alpha subunit of eukaryotic translation initiation factor 2 (eIF2α) to activate the integrated stress response (ISR). In animals, the ISR is antagonised by selective eIF2α phosphatases comprising a catalytic protein phosphatase 1 (PP1) subunit in complex with a PPP1R15-type regulatory subunit. An unbiased search for additional conserved components of the PPP1R15-PP1 phosphatase identified monomeric G-actin. Like PP1, G-actin associated with the functional core of PPP1R15 family members and G-actin depletion, by the marine toxin jasplakinolide, destabilised the endogenous PPP1R15A-PP1 complex. The abundance of the ternary PPP1R15-PP1-G-actin complex was responsive to global changes in the polymeric status of actin, as was its eIF2α-directed phosphatase activity, while localised G-actin depletion at sites enriched for PPP1R15 enhanced eIF2α phosphorylation and the downstream ISR. G-actin's role as an stabilizer of the PPP1R15-containing holophosphatase provides a mechanism for integrating signals regulating actin dynamics with stresses that trigger the ISR.