The content of spermidine and spermine in mammalian cells has important roles in protein and nucleic acid synthesis and structure, protection from oxidative damage, activity of ion channels, cell proliferation, differentiation, and apoptosis. Spermidine is essential for viability and acts as the precursor of hypusine, a post-translational addition to eIF5A allowing the translation of mRNAs encoding proteins containing polyproline tracts. Studies with Gy mice and human patients with the very rare X-linked genetic condition Snyder-Robinson syndrome that both lack spermine synthase show clearly that the correct spermine:spermidine ratio is critical for normal growth and development.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Cell Biology