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Plant Cell. 1999 Oct;11(10):1967-80.

Arabidopsis cop8 and fus4 mutations define the same gene that encodes subunit 4 of the COP9 signalosome.

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Department of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut 06520-8104, USA.


The pleiotropic constitutive photomorphogenic/deetiolated/fusca (cop/det/fus) mutants of Arabidopsis exhibit features of light-grown seedlings when grown in the dark. Cloning and biochemical analysis of COP9 have revealed that it is a component of a multiprotein complex, the COP9 signalosome (previously known as the COP9 complex). Here, we compare the immunoaffinity and the biochemical purification of the COP9 signalosome from cauliflower and confirm its eight-subunit composition. Molecular cloning of subunit 4 of the complex revealed that it is a proteasome-COP9 complex-eIF3 domain protein encoded by a gene that maps to chromosome 5, near the chromosomal location of the cop8 and fus4 mutations. Genetic complementation tests showed that the cop8 and fus4 mutations define the same locus, now designated as COP8. Molecular analysis of the subunit 4-encoding gene in both cop8 and fus4 mutants identified specific molecular lesions, and overexpression of the subunit 4 cDNA in a cop8 mutant background resulted in complete rescue of the mutant phenotype. Thus, we conclude that COP8 encodes subunit 4 of the COP9 signalosome. Examination of possible molecular interactions by using the yeast two-hybrid assay indicated that COP8 is capable of strong self-association as well as interaction with COP9, FUS6/COP11, FUS5, and Arabidopsis JAB1 homolog 1, the latter four proteins being previously defined subunits of the Arabidopsis COP9 signalosome. A comparative sequence analysis indicated that COP8 is highly conserved among multicellular eukaryotes and is also similar to a subunit of the 19S regulatory particle of the 26S proteasome.

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