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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2003 Apr 15;1626(1-3):75-82.

tRNA1Ser(G34) with the anticodon GGA can recognize not only UCC and UCU codons but also UCA and UCG codons.

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  • 1Department of Biochemistry, Jichi Medical School, 3311-1 Yakushiji, Minamikawachi-machi, Tochigi-ken 329-0498, Japan. yyamada@jichi.ac.jp <yyamada@jichi.ac.jp>


The tRNA1Ser (anticodon VGA, V=uridin-5-oxyacetic acid) is essential for translation of the UCA codon in Escherichia coli. Here, we studied the translational abilities of serine tRNA derivatives, which have different bases from wild type at the first positions of their anticodons, using synthetic mRNAs containing the UCN (N=A, G, C, or U) codon. The tRNA1Ser(G34) having the anticodon GGA was able to read not only UCC and UCU codons but also UCA and UCG codons. This means that the formation of G-A or G-G pair allowed at the wobble position and these base pairs are noncanonical. The translational efficiency of the tRNA1Ser(G34) for UCA or UCG codon depends on the 2'-O-methylation of the C32 (Cm). The 2'-O-methylation of C32 may give rise to the space necessary for G-A or G-G base pair formation between the first position of anticodon and the third position of codon.

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