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Nucleic Acids Res January 1, 2020; 48 (15): 8782-8795.

Structures of mammalian GLD-2 proteins reveal molecular basis of their functional diversity in mRNA and microRNA processing.

Ma XY , Zhang H , Feng JX , Hu JL , Yu B , Luo L , Cao YL , Liao S , Wang J , Gao S .

The stability and processing of cellular RNA transcripts are efficiently controlled via non-templated addition of single or multiple nucleotides, which is catalyzed by various nucleotidyltransferases including poly(A) polymerases (PAPs). Germline development defective 2 (GLD-2) is among the first reported cytoplasmic non-canonical PAPs that promotes the translation of germline-specific mRNAs by extending their short poly(A) tails in metazoan, such as Caenorhabditis elegans and Xenopus. On the other hand, the function of mammalian GLD-2 seems more diverse, which includes monoadenylation of certain microRNAs. To understand the structural basis that underlies the difference between mammalian and non-mammalian GLD-2 proteins, we determine crystal structures of two rodent GLD-2s. Different from C. elegans GLD-2, mammalian GLD-2 is an intrinsically robust PAP with an extensively positively charged surface. Rodent and C. elegans GLD-2s have a topological difference in the β-sheet region of the central domain. Whereas C. elegans GLD-2 prefers adenosine-rich RNA substrates, mammalian GLD-2 can work on RNA oligos with various sequences. Coincident with its activity on microRNAs, mammalian GLD-2 structurally resembles the mRNA and miRNA processor terminal uridylyltransferase 7 (TUT7). Our study reveals how GLD-2 structurally evolves to a more versatile nucleotidyltransferase, and provides important clues in understanding its biological function in mammals.

PubMed ID: 32633758
PMC ID: PMC7470959
Article link: Nucleic Acids Res

Genes referenced: tspan7 tut4

Article Images: [+] show captions
References [+] :
, UniProt: a worldwide hub of protein knowledge. 2020, Pubmed