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Gene. 2002 Jul 10;294(1-2):147-56.

Organization, sequence, and phylogenetic analysis of the ribosomal protein S3 gene from Drosophila virilis.

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  • 1Division of Molecular Biology, Insitute of Biology, University of Oslo, P.O. Box 1031, Blindern, N-0315, Oslo, Norway.


Ribosomal protein S3 (RPS3) is a multifunctional ribosomal protein: it is a structural and functional component of the ribosome, and also a DNA repair enzyme involved in the DNA base excision repair pathway. Here we cloned and characterized the genomic organization of the ribosomal protein S3 gene (RpS3) homolog in Drosophila virilis. We then compared gene structure and protein sequences of RpS3 from vertebrates, invertebrates, and plants. These comparisons revealed that RpS3 genes from plants to mammals have highly conserved coding and amino acid sequences, and also protein size. Further comparisons of the protein sequences show that important domains are well conserved in both localization and sequence. In contrast, comparison of gene size and organization reveals differing patterns and levels of conservation. Whereas invertebrate RpS3 genes are small in size and gene organization is variable (from zero to four introns), vertebrates have a considerably larger (but variable) gene size and a uniform gene organization. The larger gene size in vertebrates is due to increased number and expansion of introns. Although the plant RpS3 genes are relatively small ( approximately 1.8 kb), their organization resembles that seen in vertebrates. The high conservation through different phyla may suggest that RPS3 might be under great functional constraints, both in its capacity as a component of the ribosome and as a component of a DNA repair system. Finally, electrophoretic mobility shift assays indicate that an upstream element binds a nuclear protein(s).

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