Send to:

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
Nat Chem Biol. 2010 Apr;6(4):277-82. doi: 10.1038/nchembio.323. Epub 2010 Feb 7.

Agmatine-conjugated cytidine in a tRNA anticodon is essential for AUA decoding in archaea.

Author information

  • 1Department of Chemistry and Biotechnology, Graduate School of Engineering, University of Tokyo, Tokyo, Japan.


A modified base at the first (wobble) position of some tRNA anticodons is critical for deciphering the genetic code. In eukaryotes and eubacteria, AUA codons are decoded by tRNAsIle with modified bases pseudouridine (and/or inosine) and lysidine, respectively. The mechanism by which archaeal species translate AUA codons is unclear. We describe a polyamine-conjugated modified base, 2-agmatinylcytidine (agm(2)C or agmatidine), at the wobble position of archaeal tRNA(Ile) that decodes AUA codons specifically. We demonstrate that archaeal cells use agmatine to synthesize agm(2)C of tRNA(Ile). We also identified a new enzyme, tRNA(Ile)-agm(2)C synthetase (TiaS), that catalyzes agm(2)C formation in the presence of agmatine and ATP. Although agm(2)C is chemically similar to lysidine, TiaS constitutes a distinct class of enzyme from tRNA(Ile)-lysidine synthetase (TilS), suggesting that the decoding systems evolved convergently across domains.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Nature Publishing Group
    Loading ...
    Write to the Help Desk