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J Cell Biol. 1999 Feb 8;144(3):389-401.

A novel in vivo assay reveals inhibition of ribosomal nuclear export in ran-cycle and nucleoporin mutants.

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  • 1Biochemie-Zentrum Heidelberg, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany.


To identify components involved in the nuclear export of ribosomes in yeast, we developed an in vivo assay exploiting a green fluorescent protein (GFP)-tagged version of ribosomal protein L25. After its import into the nucleolus, L25-GFP assembles with 60S ribosomal subunits that are subsequently exported into the cytoplasm. In wild-type cells, GFP-labeled ribosomes are only detected by fluorescence in the cytoplasm. However, thermosensitive rna1-1 (Ran-GAP), prp20-1 (Ran-GEF), and nucleoporin nup49 and nsp1 mutants are impaired in ribosomal export as revealed by nuclear accumulation of L25-GFP. Furthermore, overexpression of dominant-negative RanGTP (Gsp1-G21V) and the tRNA exportin Los1p inhibits ribosomal export. The pattern of subnuclear accumulation of L25-GFP observed in different mutants is not identical, suggesting that transport can be blocked at different steps. Thus, nuclear export of ribosomes requires the nuclear/cytoplasmic Ran-cycle and distinct nucleoporins. This assay can be used to identify soluble transport factors required for nuclear exit of ribosomes.

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