Send to

Choose Destination
Mol Cell Biol. 1991 Aug;11(8):3949-59.

Binding sites of the 9- and 14-kilodalton heterodimeric protein subunit of the signal recognition particle (SRP) are contained exclusively in the Alu domain of SRP RNA and contain a sequence motif that is conserved in evolution.

Author information

Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of California, San Francisco, 94143-0448.


The mammalian signal recognition particle (SRP) is a small cytoplasmic ribonucleoprotein required for the cotranslational targeting of secretory proteins to the endoplasmic reticulum membrane. The heterodimeric protein subunit SRP9/14 was previously shown to be essential for SRP to cause pausing in the elongation of secretory protein translation. RNase protection and filter binding experiments have shown that binding of SRP9/14 to SRP RNA depends solely on sequences located in a domain of SRP RNA that is strongly homologous to the Alu family of repetitive DNA sequences. In addition, the use of hydroxyl radicals, as RNA-cleaving reagents, has revealed four distinct regions in this domain that are in close contact with SRP9/14. Surprisingly, the nucleotide sequence in one of these contact sites, predicted to be mostly single stranded, was found to be extremely conserved in SRP RNAs of evolutionarily distant organisms ranging from eubacteria and archaebacteria to yeasts and higher eucaryotic cells. This finding suggests that SRP9/14 homologs may also exist in these organisms, where they possibly contribute to the regulation of protein synthesis similar to that observed for mammalian SRP in vitro.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center