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Nat Struct Biol. 2001 Feb;8(2):113-6.

A new twist on RNA helicases: DExH/D box proteins as RNPases.

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Department of Microbiology & Immunology, Weill Medical College of Cornell University, New York, New York 10021, USA.


DExH/D box proteins are required for the major transactions of RNA, including mRNA synthesis, pre-mRNA splicing, ribosome biogenesis, translation and RNA decay. In the popular imagination, DExH/D box proteins have become synonymous with 'RNA helicases', which are enzymes that unwind duplex RNAs in concert with the hydrolysis of nucleoside triphosphates (NTPs). But all DExH/D box proteins may not be RNA helicases and the energy of NTP hydrolysis by DExH/D box proteins may be harnessed for other purposes. Cellular RNAs are associated with proteins, often in large ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complexes. This review focuses on recent progress suggesting a role for DExH/D box proteins as 'RNPases' that use chemical energy to remodel the interactions of RNA and proteins.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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