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Methods Enzymol. 2008;448:185-210. doi: 10.1016/S0076-6879(08)02610-4.

Reconstitution of RNA exosomes from human and Saccharomyces cerevisiae cloning, expression, purification, and activity assays.

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Structural Biology Program, Sloan-Kettering Institute, New York, NY, USA.


Eukaryotic RNA exosomes participate in 3' to 5'-processing and degradation of RNA in the nucleus and cytoplasm. RNA exosomes are multisubunit complexes composed of at least nine distinct proteins that form the exosome core. Although the eukaryotic exosome core shares structural and sequence similarity to phosphorolytic archaeal exosomes and bacterial PNPase, the eukaryotic exosome core has diverged from its archaeal and bacterial cousins and appears devoid of phosphorolytic activity. In yeast, the processive hydrolytic 3' to 5'-exoribonuclease Rrp44 associates with exosomes in the nucleus and cytoplasm. Although human Rrp44 appears homologous to yeast Rrp44, it has not yet been shown to associate with human exosomes. In the nucleus, eukaryotic exosomes interact with Rrp6, a distributive hydrolytic 3' to 5'-exoribonuclease. To facilitate analysis of eukaryotic RNA exosomes, we will describe procedures used to clone, express, purify, and reconstitute the nine-subunit human exosome and nine-, ten-, and eleven-subunit yeast exosomes. We will also discuss procedures to assess exoribonuclease activity for reconstituted exosomes.

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