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J Biol Chem. 1975 Dec 25;250(24):9322-9.

Purification of mRNA guanylyltransferase and mRNA (guanine-7-) methyltransferase from vaccinia virions.


The sequences m7G(5')pppGm-and m7G(5')pppAm-are located at the 5' termini of vaccinia mRNAs. Two novel enzymatic activities have been purified from vaccinia virus cores which modify the 5' terminus of unmethylated mRNA. One activity transfers GMP from GTP to mRNA and is designated a GTP: mRNA guanylyltransferase. The second activity transfers a methyl group from S-adenosylmethionine to position 7 of the added guanosine and is designated a S-adenosylmethionine: mRNA (guanine-7-)methyltransferase. Advantage was taken of the selective binding of these activities to homopolyribonucleotides relative to DNA to achieve a 200-fold increase in specific activity. The guanylyl- and methyltransferase remained inseparable during chromatography on DNA-agarose, poly(U)-Sepharose, poly(A)-Sepharose, and Sephadex G-200 and during sedimentation through sucrose density gradients suggesting they were associated. A Stokes radius of 5.0 nm, an S20,w of 6.0 and a molecular weight of 127,000 were obtained by gel filtration on Sephadex G-200 and sedimentation in sucrose density gradients. Under denaturing conditions of sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis two major polypeptides were detected in purified enzyme preparations. Their molecular weights of 95,000 and 31,400 suggested they were polypeptide components of the 127,000 molecular weight enzyme system.

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