Exportin 5 is a RanGTP-dependent dsRNA-binding protein that mediates nuclear export of pre-miRNAs.
microRNAs (miRNAs) are widespread among eukaryotes, and studies in several systems have revealed that miRNAs can regulate expression of specific genes. Primary miRNA transcripts are initially processed to approximately 70-nucleotide (nt) stem-loop structures (pre-miRNAs), exported to the cytoplasm, further processed to yield approximately 22-nt dsRNAs, and finally incorporated into ribonucleoprotein particles, which are thought to be the active species. Here we study nuclear export of pre-miRNAs and show that the process is saturable and thus carrier-mediated. Export is sensitive to depletion of nuclear RanGTP and, according to this criterion, mediated by a RanGTP-dependent exportin. An unbiased affinity chromatography approach with immobilized pre-miRNAs identified exportin 5 as the pre-miRNA-specific export carrier. We have cloned exportin 5 from Xenopus and demonstrate that antibodies raised against the Xenopus receptor specifically block pre-miRNA export from nuclei of Xenopus oocytes. We further show that exportin 5 interacts with double-stranded RNA in a sequence-independent manner.
PubMed ID: 14730017
PMC ID: PMC1370530
Article link: RNA.
Genes referenced: xpo5 xpo5.2