Eukaryotic response to hypothermia in relation to integrated stress responses

Adjirackor, Naki A.; Harvey, Katie E. and Harvey, Simon C. (2020). Eukaryotic response to hypothermia in relation to integrated stress responses. Cell Stress and Chaperones, 25(6) pp. 833–846.



Eukaryotic cells respond to hypothermic stress through a series of regulatory mechanisms that preserve energy resources and prolong cell survival. These mechanisms include alterations in gene expression, attenuated global protein synthesis and changes in the lipid composition of the phospholipid bilayer. Cellular responses to hyperthermia, hypoxia, nutrient deprivation and oxidative stress have been comprehensively investigated, but studies of the cellular response to cold stress are more limited. Responses to cold stress are however of great importance both in the wild, where exposure to low and fluctuating environmental temperatures is common, and in medical and biotechnology settings where cells and tissues are frequently exposed to hypothermic stress and cryopreservation. This means that it is vitally important to understand how cells are impacted by low temperatures and by the decreases and subsequent increases in temperature associated with cold stress. Here, we review the ways in which eukaryotic cells respond to hypothermic stress and how these compare to the well-described and highly integrated stress response systems that govern the cellular response to other types of stress.

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