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Mol Cell Biol. Apr 1988; 8(4): 1591–1601.
PMCID: PMC363319

mRNA structures influencing translation in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae.


The mRNA sequence and structures that modify and are required for translation of iso-1-cytochrome c in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae were investigated with sets of CYC1 alleles having alterations in the 5' leader region. Measurements of levels of CYC1 mRNA and iso-1-cytochrome c in strains having single copies of altered alleles with nested deletions led to the conclusion that there is no specific sequence adjacent to the AUG initiator codon required for efficient translation. However, the nucleotides preceding the AUG initiator codon at positions -1 and -3 slightly modified the efficiency of translation to an order of preference similar to that found in higher cells. In contrast to large effects observed in higher eucaryotes, the magnitude of this AUG context effect in S. cerevisiae was only two- to threefold. Furthermore, introduction of hairpin structures in the vicinity of the AUG initiator codon inhibited translation, with the degree of inhibition related to the stability and proximity of the hairpin. These results with S. cerevisiae and published findings on other organisms suggest that translation in S. cerevisiae is more sensitive to secondary structures than is translation in higher eucaryotes.

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Selected References

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