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J Cell Biol. 1994 Jul 1; 126(1): 11–23.
PMCID: PMC2120090

Differential interaction of splicing snRNPs with coiled bodies and interchromatin granules during mitosis and assembly of daughter cell nuclei


In the interphase nucleus of mammalian cells the U1, U2, U4/U6, and U5 small nuclear ribonucleoproteins (snRNPs), which are subunits of spliceosomes, associate with specific subnuclear domains including interchromatin granules and coiled bodies. Here, we analyze the association of splicing snRNPs with these structures during mitosis and reassembly of daughter nuclei. At the onset of mitosis snRNPs are predominantly diffuse in the cytoplasm, although a subset remain associated with remnants of coiled bodies and clusters of mitotic interchromatin granules, respectively. The number and size of mitotic coiled bodies remain approximately unchanged from metaphase to early telophase while snRNP-containing clusters of mitotic interchromatin granules increase in size and number as cells progress from anaphase to telophase. During telophase snRNPs are transported into daughter nuclei while the clusters of mitotic interchromatin granules remain in the cytoplasm. The timing of nuclear import of splicing snRNPs closely correlates with the onset of transcriptional activity in daughter nuclei. When transcription restarts in telophase cells snRNPs have a diffuse nucleoplasmic distribution. As cells progress to G1 snRNP- containing clusters of interchromatin granules reappear in the nucleus. Coiled bodies appear later in G1, although the coiled body antigen, p80 coilin, enters early into telophase nuclei. After inhibition of transcription we still observe nuclear import of snRNPs and the subsequent appearance of snRNP-containing clusters of interchromatin granules, but not coiled body formation. These data demonstrate that snRNP associations with coiled bodies and interchromatin granules are differentially regulated during the cell division cycle and suggest that these structures play distinct roles connected with snRNP structure, transport, and/or function.

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Selected References

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