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Mol Cell Biol. 2002 May;22(10):3264-75.

Essential roles of Bdp1, a subunit of RNA polymerase III initiation factor TFIIIB, in transcription and tRNA processing.

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  • 1Division of Biology and Center for Molecular Genetics, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, California 92093-0634, USA.


The essential Saccharomyces cerevisiae gene BDP1 encodes a subunit of RNA polymerase III (Pol III) transcription factor (TFIIIB); TATA box binding protein (TBP) and Brf1 are the other subunits of this three-protein complex. Deletion analysis defined three segments of Bdp1 that are essential for viability. A central segment, comprising amino acids 327 to 353, was found to be dispensable, and cells making Bdp1 that was split within this segment, at amino acid 352, are viable. Suppression of bdp1 conditional viability by overexpressing SPT15 and BRF1 identified functional interactions of specific Bdp1 segments with TBP and Brf1, respectively. A Bdp1 deletion near essential segment I was synthetically lethal with overexpression of PCF1-1, a dominant gain-of-function mutation in the second tetracopeptide repeat motif (out of 11) of the Tfc4 (tau(131)) subunit of TFIIIC. The analysis also identifies a connection between Bdp1 and posttranscriptional processing of Pol III transcripts. Yeast genomic library screening identified RPR1 as the specific overexpression suppressor of very slow growth at 37 degrees C due to deletion of Bdp1 amino acids 253 to 269. RPR1 RNA, a Pol III transcript, is the RNA subunit of RNase P, which trims pre-tRNA transcript 5' ends. Maturation of tRNA was found to be aberrant in bdp1-Delta 253-269 cells, and RPR1 transcription with the highly resolved Pol III transcription system in vitro was also diminished when recombinant Bdp1 Delta 253-269 replaced wild-type Bdp1. Physical interaction of RNase P with Bdp1 was demonstrated by coimmunoprecipitation and pull-down assays.

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