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Dev Biol. 1987 May;121(1):237-46.

Widespread changes in the translation and adenylation of maternal messenger RNAs following fertilization of Spisula oocytes.


We have reported previously that sequence-specific adenylations and deadenylations accompany changes in the translation of maternal mRNA following fertilization of Spisula oocytes (E.T. Rosenthal, T.R. Tansey, and J.V. Ruderman, 1983, J. Mol. Biol. 166, 309-327). The data presented here confirm and extend those observations. We have identified four classes of maternal mRNA with respect to translation: Class 1-not translated in oocytes and translated at very high efficiency immediately after fertilization, Class 2-not translated in oocytes and partially utilized for translation following fertilization, Class 3-translated in oocytes and not translated in embryos, and Class 4-not translated either before or after fertilization. There is an excellent, although not perfect, correlation between the translation of an mRNA and its polyadenylation status. The poly(A) tails of all the mRNAs which are translated in oocytes and untranslated in embryos are shortened at fertilization, and the poly(A) tails of those mRNAs which are untranslated in oocytes and translated in embryos are lengthened at fertilization. These adenylations and deadenylations occur simultaneously during the first 20 min following fertilization.

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