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Nat Struct Mol Biol. 2007 Jun;14(6):519-26. Epub 2007 May 7.

Opposing classes of prp8 alleles modulate the transition between the catalytic steps of pre-mRNA splicing.

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  • 1The Rockefeller University, New York, New York 10021, USA.


The spliceosome is thought to undergo a conformational change between the two catalytic steps of precursor messenger RNA splicing, although the specific events in this transition are poorly understood. We previously proposed a two-state model of splicing in which the conformations required for the first and second steps are in competition. Here, we identify and characterize a class of prp8 mutants that suppress first-step splicing defects and oppose the action of the previously described prp8 suppressors of second-step defects; these opposing effects parallel those of ribosomal 'ram' and 'restrictive' mutants, which alter fidelity of transfer RNA decoding. On the basis of genetic interactions, we propose that prp8-mediated substrate repositioning during the transition occurs between catalytic-center opening and closure mediated by the U6 small nuclear RNA and the DExH/D ATPase gene prp16. Modulation of these events alters splice-site selection and splicing fidelity.

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