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J Biol Chem. 2002 Mar 8;277(10):7752-60. Epub 2002 Jan 4.

Nab2p is required for poly(A) RNA export in Saccharomyces cerevisiae and is regulated by arginine methylation via Hmt1p.

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Department of Biochemistry, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia 30322, USA.


From transcription to translation, mRNA is complexed with heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoproteins (hnRNP proteins) that mediate mRNA processing, export from the nucleus, and delivery into the cytoplasm. Although the mechanism is unknown, export of mature mRNA from the nucleus is a critical regulatory step in gene expression. Analyses of hnRNP proteins have shown that many of these proteins are required for this essential cellular process. In this study, we characterize the Saccharomyces cerevisiae Nab2 protein, which was first identified as a poly(A) RNA-binding protein (Anderson, J. T., Wilson, S. M., Datar, K. V., and Swanson, M. S. (1993) Mol. Cell. Biol. 13, 2730-2741). Our work indicates that poly(A) RNA export from the nucleus is dependent upon a functional Nab2 protein; correspondingly, export of Nab2p from the nucleus is dependent upon ongoing RNA polymerase II transcription. Furthermore, we show that Nab2p is modified within its RGG domain by the type I protein-arginine methyltransferase, Hmt1p. Our experiments demonstrate that arginine methylation is required for the export of Nab2p from the nucleus and therefore establish an in vivo effect of this modification. Overall, these experiments provide evidence that Nab2p is an hnRNP protein that is required for poly(A) RNA export and whose export from the nucleus is regulated by Hmt1p.

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