The Unfolded Protein Response (UPR) is a regulatory system that protects the Endoplasmic Reticulum (ER) from overload. The UPR is provoked by the accumulation of improperly folded protein in the ER during times of unusually high secretion activity. Analysis of mutants with altered UPR, however, shows that the UPR is also required for normal development and function of secretory cells.
One level at which the URP operates is transcriptional and translational regulation: mobilization of ATF6 and IRE1 leads to increased transcription of genes encoding chaperones, and mobilization of PERK (pancreatic eIF2alpha kinase, EIF2AK3) leads to phosphorylation of the translation initiation factor eIF2alpha and global down-regulation of protein synthesis. These three regulatory pathways are annotated here.