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Nucleic Acids Research

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Nuclear proteins, Nucleoproteins, Eukaryotic cells, Archaebacteria, RNA-protein interactions


Eukaryotes and archaea use two sets of specialized ribonucleoproteins (RNPs) to carry out sequencespecific methylation and pseudouridylation of RNA, the two most abundant types of modifications of cellular RNAs. In eukaryotes, these protein–RNA complexes localize to the nucleolus and are called small nucleolar RNPs (snoRNPs), while in archaea they are known as small RNPs (sRNP). The C/D class of sno(s)RNPs carries out ribose- 20-O-methylation, while the H/ACA class is responsible for pseudouridylation of their RNA targets. Here, we review the recent advances in the structure, assembly and function of the conserved C/D and H/ACA sno(s)RNPs. Structures of each of the core archaeal sRNP proteins have been determined and their assembly pathways delineated. Furthermore, the recent structure of an H/ACA complex has revealed the organization of a complete sRNP. Combined with current biochemical data, these structures offer insight into the highly homologous eukaryotic snoRNPs.


Note: At the time of writing, Steve Reichow was affiliated with the University of Washington.

©2007 The Author(s).



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