The regulation of translation has emerged as a major determinant of gene expression and is critical for both normal cellular function and the development of disease. Numerous studies have highlighted the diverse, and sometimes related, mechanisms which underlie the regulation of global translation rates and the translational control of specific mRNAs. In the present paper, we discuss the emerging roles of the basal translation factor PABP [poly(A)-binding protein] in mRNA-specific translational control in metazoa which suggest that PABP function is more complex than first recognized.

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