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EMBO J. 1994 Jul 1;13(13):3127-35.

The yeast NOP4 gene product is an essential nucleolar protein required for pre-rRNA processing and accumulation of 60S ribosomal subunits.

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


The Saccharomyces cerevisiae NOP4 gene was isolated by screening a lambda gt11 yeast genomic DNA library with a monoclonal antibody against a yeast nucleolar protein. NOP4 encodes a 78 kDa protein that contains two prototypical RNA recognition motifs (RRMs) flanking an imperfect RRM lacking characteristic RNP1 and RNP2 motifs. In addition, there is a fourth incomplete RRM. NOP4 is a single copy essential gene present on chromosome XVI, between RAD1 and PEP4. To examine the function of Nop4p, we constructed a conditional null allele of NOP4 by placing this gene under the control of the glucose-repressible GAL1 promoter. When cells are shifted from galactose-containing medium to glucose-containing medium, NOP4 transcription is terminated, Nop4 protein is depleted and cell growth is impaired. Nop4 protein depletion results in diminished accumulation of 60S ribosomal subunits, assignable to a defect in ribosome biogenesis arising from a lack of production of mature 25S rRNA from 27S precursor rRNA.

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