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Trends Genet. 2012 Jul;28(7):314-22. doi: 10.1016/j.tig.2012.03.008. Epub 2012 Apr 21.

Subcellular localization of RNA and proteins in prokaryotes.

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Department of Microbiology and Molecular Genetics, Institute for Medical Research Israel-Canada (IMRIC), The Hebrew University - Hadassah Medical School, PO Box 12272, Jerusalem 91120, Israel.


The field of bacterial cell biology has been revolutionized in the last decade by improvements in imaging capabilities which have revealed that bacterial cells, previously thought to be non-compartmentalized, possess an intricate higher-order organization. Many bacterial proteins localize to specific subcellular domains and regulate the spatial deployment of other proteins, DNA and lipids. Recently, the surprising discovery was made that bacterial RNA molecules are also specifically localized. However, the mechanisms that underlie bacterial cell architecture are just starting to be unraveled. The limited number of distribution patterns observed thus far for bacterial proteins and RNAs, and the similarity between the patterns exhibited by these macromolecules, suggest that the processes that underlie their localization are inextricably linked. We discuss these spatial arrangements and the insights that they provide on processes, such as localized translation, protein complex formation, and crosstalk between bacterial machineries.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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