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Nucleic Acids Res. 2013 Sep;41(16):7889-904. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkt545. Epub 2013 Jun 20.

Has1 regulates consecutive maturation and processing steps for assembly of 60S ribosomal subunits.

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Department of Biological Sciences, Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA.


Ribosome biogenesis requires ∼200 assembly factors in Saccharomyces cerevisiae. The pre-ribosomal RNA (rRNA) processing defects associated with depletion of most of these factors have been characterized. However, how assembly factors drive the construction of ribonucleoprotein neighborhoods and how structural rearrangements are coupled to pre-rRNA processing are not understood. Here, we reveal ATP-independent and ATP-dependent roles of the Has1 DEAD-box RNA helicase in consecutive pre-rRNA processing and maturation steps for construction of 60S ribosomal subunits. Has1 associates with pre-60S ribosomes in an ATP-independent manner. Has1 binding triggers exonucleolytic trimming of 27SA3 pre-rRNA to generate the 5' end of 5.8S rRNA and drives incorporation of ribosomal protein L17 with domain I of 5.8S/25S rRNA. ATP-dependent activity of Has1 promotes stable association of additional domain I ribosomal proteins that surround the polypeptide exit tunnel, which are required for downstream processing of 27SB pre-rRNA. Furthermore, in the absence of Has1, aberrant 27S pre-rRNAs are targeted for irreversible turnover. Thus, our data support a model in which Has1 helps to establish domain I architecture to prevent pre-rRNA turnover and couples domain I folding with consecutive pre-rRNA processing steps.

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