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Wiley Interdiscip Rev RNA. 2011 May-Jun;2(3):321-35. doi: 10.1002/wrna.54. Epub 2010 Oct 18.

Pre-mRNA 3'-end processing complex assembly and function.

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  • 1Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, University of California, Irvine, CA, USA.


The 3'-ends of almost all eukaryotic mRNAs are formed in a two-step process, an endonucleolytic cleavage followed by polyadenylation (the addition of a poly-adenosine or poly(A) tail). These reactions take place in the pre-mRNA 3' processing complex, a macromolecular machinery that consists of more than 20 proteins. A general framework for how the pre-mRNA 3' processing complex assembles and functions has emerged from extensive studies over the past several decades using biochemical, genetic, computational, and structural approaches. In this article, we review what we have learned about this important cellular machine and discuss the remaining questions and future challenges.

Copyright © 2010 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

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