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Biochim Biophys Acta. 2005 Feb 14;1727(2):87-96. Epub 2004 Dec 31.

The YrdC protein--a putative ribosome maturation factor.

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Department of Genetics, Microbiology and Toxicology (GMT), University of Stockholm, S-106 91 Stockholm, Sweden.


Release factor one (RF1) terminates protein synthesis in response to stop codons UAG and UAA. A mutant allele of RF1 causes temperature sensitive growth at 42 degrees C. We have earlier described the isolation of a suppressor of the temperature sensitive phenotype. The suppressor mutation is a small deletion in the open reading frame yrdC, and we have shown that the DeltayrdC mutation leads to immature 30S subunits and, as a consequence, to fewer translating ribosomes. YrdC is a small conserved protein with a dsRNA-binding surface. Here, we have characterized the YrdC protein. We show that the deletion leads to no production of functional protein, and we have indications that the YrdC protein might be essential in a wild type background. The protein is needed for the maturation of 16S rRNA, even though it does not interact tightly with either of the ribosomal subunits, or the 70S particles. The less effective maturation of rRNA affects the ribosomal feedback control, leading to an increase in expression from P1rrnB. We suggest that the function of the YrdC protein is to keep an rRNA structure needed for proper processing of 16S rRNA, especially at lower temperatures. This activity may require other factor(s). We suggest the gene be renamed rimN, and the mutant allele rimN141.

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