Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Key function of enzyme involved in RNA processing described

Date:
June 11, 2011
Source:
Case Western Reserve University
Summary:
Researchers have identified a cellular mechanism that is critical in maintaining normal cell function. They examined the function of TRAMP, a protein complex involved in the processing of RNA or ribonucleic acid within the cell. They identified a key function for the protein Mtr4p in a process that initiates the degradation of select RNAs, a necessary step in preserving normal cell function.

Researchers at the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine have identified a cellular mechanism that is critical in maintaining normal cell function.

In their work, the researchers led by Eckhard Jankowsky, PhD, researcher and associate professor in the Center for RNA Molecular Biology at the Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, examined the function of TRAMP, a protein complex involved in the processing of RNA or ribonucleic acid within the cell. They identified a key function for the protein Mtr4p in a process that initiates the degradation of select RNAs, a necessary step in preserving normal cell function.

The research findings appear in the June 9 issue of the journal Cell. Dr. Jankowsky is the senior author.

Cellular function requires a multitude of different types of RNA that need to be correctly processed and assembled into functional complexes.

"RNA that is improperly assembled, defective, or no longer needed, looks very similar to RNA that is being used," Dr. Jankowsky said. "So, improperly assembled, defective, or no longer needed RNA can readily interfere with ongoing processes. To avoid this, there are several very efficient RNA degradation pathways, and one of these is initiated by TRAMP."

The TRAMP complex identifies the RNAs slated for degradation and tags them with a stretch of adenosines, one of the four nucleotides of which RNA is made. The number of adenosines in the tag has to be limited, because RNAs with too many adenosines are no longer recognized as targets for degradation.

Dr. Jankowsky and the team of researchers that included Huijue Jia, a graduate student at the School of Medicine, and Jim Anderson, associate professor of Marquette University, a key collaborator and instrumental figure in the discovery of the TRAMP complex, studied the molecular mechanism how the TRAMP complex marks RNAs. TRAMP is composed of the enzyme poly(A) polymerase Trf4p, the Zn-knuckle protein Air2p, and Mtr4p, a RNA helicase. Helicases unwind helices, but in TRAMP, the researchers found, the helicase Mtr4p controls the number of adenosines added.

In their paper, the researchers detail how the helicase controls the number of the adenosines that are appended. Mtr4p counts the number of adenosines (between four and five) that have been appended by the polymerase, and then adjusts the polymerase activity accordingly.

"Our work explains an important step in the mechanism by which cells mark RNAs for degradation in the nucleus," Dr. Jankowsky said. "Appropriate tagging is critical for cell function."

The research, which took place in Dr. Jankowsky's lab in the Center for RNA Molecular Biology at Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, establishes a basis for future research to examine the steps between tagging RNA and the actual RNA degradation by other enzymes that are involved in this process.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Case Western Reserve University. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Huijue Jia, Xuying Wang, Fei Liu, Ulf-Peter Guenther, Sukanya Srinivasan, James T. Anderson, Eckhard Jankowsky. The RNA Helicase Mtr4p Modulates Polyadenylation in the TRAMP Complex. Cell, Volume 145, Issue 6, 890-901, 10 June 2011 DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2011.05.010

Cite This Page:

Case Western Reserve University. "Key function of enzyme involved in RNA processing described." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 11 June 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110609122918.htm>.
Case Western Reserve University. (2011, June 11). Key function of enzyme involved in RNA processing described. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110609122918.htm
Case Western Reserve University. "Key function of enzyme involved in RNA processing described." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/06/110609122918.htm (accessed August 30, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

Killer Amoeba Found in Louisiana Water System

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) State health officials say testing has confirmed the presence of a killer amoeba in a water system serving three St. John the Baptist Parish towns. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Australian Sheep Gets Long Overdue Haircut

Raw: Australian Sheep Gets Long Overdue Haircut

AP (Aug. 28, 2014) Hoping to break the record for world's wooliest, Shaun the sheep came up 10 pounds shy with his fleece weighing over 50 pounds after being shorn for the first time in years. (Aug. 28) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Minds Blown: Scientists Develop Fish That Walk On Land

Minds Blown: Scientists Develop Fish That Walk On Land

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) Canadian scientists looking into the very first land animals took a fish out of water and forced it to walk. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Huge Ancient Wine Cellar Found In Israel

Huge Ancient Wine Cellar Found In Israel

Newsy (Aug. 28, 2014) An international team uncovered a large ancient wine celler that likely belonged to a Cannonite ruler. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins