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Molecular Biology International
Volume 2011 (2011), Article ID 137459, 14 pages
Review Article

Protein Methylation and Stress Granules: Posttranslational Remodeler or Innocent Bystander?

1Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology, Department of Medicine, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, NY 1065, USA
2Biochemical Molecular Neurobiology Laboratory, Department of Molecular Biology, New York State Institute for Basic Research in Developmental Disabilities, 1050 Forest Hill Road, Staten Island, NY 10314, USA

Received 30 November 2010; Accepted 10 January 2011

Academic Editor: Jörg Kobarg

Copyright © 2011 Wen Xie and Robert B. Denman. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Stress granules contain a large number of post-translationally modified proteins, and studies have shown that these modifications serve as recruitment tags for specific proteins and even control the assembly and disassembly of the granules themselves. Work originating from our laboratory has focused on the role protein methylation plays in stress granule composition and function. We have demonstrated that both asymmetrically and symmetrically dimethylated proteins are core constituents of stress granules, and we have endeavored to understand when and how this occurs. Here we seek to integrate this data into a framework consisting of the currently known post-translational modifications affecting stress granules to produce a model of stress granule dynamics that, in turn, may serve as a benchmark for understanding and predicting how post-translational modifications regulate other granule types.