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Rudolf Virchow Center for Integrative and Translational Bioimaging



Novel insights into RNP granules by employing the trypanosome's microtubule skeleton as a molecular sieve.

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Fritz M, Vanselow J, Sauer N, Lamer S, Goos C, Siegel TN, Subota I, Schlosser A, Carrington M, Kramer S // Nucleic Acids Research 2015 Sep 18;43(16):8013-32

Abstract: RNP granules are ribonucleoprotein assemblies that regulate the post-transcriptional fate of mRNAs in all eukaryotes. Their exact function remains poorly understood, one reason for this is that RNP granule purification has not yet been achieved. We have exploited a unique feature of trypanosomes to prepare a cellular fraction highly enriched in starvation stress granules. First, granules remain trapped within the cage-like, subpellicular microtubule array of the trypanosome cytoskeleton while soluble proteins are washed away. Second, the microtubules are depolymerized and the granules are released.RNA sequencing combined with single molecule mRNA FISH identified the short and highly abundant mRNAs encoding ribosomal mRNAs as being excluded from granules. By mass spectrometry we have identified 463 stress granule candidate proteins. For 17/49 proteins tested by eYFP tagging we have confirmed the localization to granules, including one phosphatase, one methyltransferase and two proteins with a function in trypanosome life-cycle regulation.The novel method presented here enables the unbiased identification of novel RNP granule components, paving the way towards an understanding of RNP granule function.

© The Author(s) 2015. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research.

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Dr. Daniela Diefenbacher 
(Pressestelle, Rudolf-Virchow-Zentrum),Tel. 0931 3188631,