N4G3, a cell line that overexpresses translation initiation factor eIF4G, one of the components of eIF4F, was made by stable transfection of the human eIF4G cDNA into NIH3T3 cells. The cells expressed 80–100 times greater levels of eIF4G mRNA than did NIH3T3 cells. N4G3 cells formed transformed foci on a monolayer of cells, showed anchorage-independent growth, and formed tumors in nude mice. These results indicate that overexpression of eIF4G caused malignant transformation of NIH3T3 cells. It is also known that overexpression of eIF4E, another component of eIF4F, causes transformation of NIH3T3 cells. However, there was no difference in the amount of eIF4E protein between N4G3 and NIH3T3 cells, indicating that cell transformation does not involve a change in eIF4E levels. The results may be due to an effect of eIF4G on translational control of protein synthesis directed by mRNAs having long 5′-untranslated region.


This work was supported by a Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research from the Ministry of Education, Science, Sports and Culture, Japan, and by Research Aid from the Uehara Memorial Foundation, Japan.

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