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RNA Biol. 2009 Apr-Jun;6(2):165-8.

Reconstitution of chromatoid body-like particles in cultured cells: a novel approach to elucidate the mechanism of assembly and function of the chromatoid body.

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Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Medicine, University of Sherbrooke, Sherbrooke, Qu├ębec, Canada.


The chromatoid body is a large perinuclear ribonucleoprotein particle of germ cells. The chromatoid body is also present in stem cells from planarians. This particle shares markers specific to protein aggresomes and P-bodies, and concentrate several RNA pathways. The assembly mechanism of chromatoid bodies is unknown, and in the absence of molecular approaches to test their function, their role as a possible center for posttranscriptional regulation of gene expression remains speculative. Recently, an RNA granule similar to the chromatoid body was fortuitously reconstituted in cultured cells by expressing a cytoplasmic isoform of the prion protein. This finding opens new avenues of investigations in the field of the still elusive chromatoid body.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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