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Mol Cell Biol. 1998 Jan;18(1):488-98.

cDNA cloning and characterization of the human U3 small nucleolar ribonucleoprotein complex-associated 55-kilodalton protein.

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Department of Biochemistry, University of Nijmegen, The Netherlands.


The eukaryotic nucleolus contains a large number of small RNA molecules (snoRNAs) which, in the form of small nucleolar ribonucleoprotein complexes (snoRNPs), are involved in the processing and modification of pre-rRNA. The most abundant and one of the best-conserved snoRNAs is the U3 RNA. So far, only one human U3 snoRNA-associated protein, fibrillarin, has been characterized. Previously, the U3 snoRNPwas purified from CHO cells, and three proteins of 15, 50, and 55 kDa were found to copurify with the U3 snoRNA (B. Lübben, C. Marshallsay, N. Rottmann, and R. Lührmann, Nucleic Acids Res. 21:5377-5385, 1993). Here we report the cDNA cloning and characterization of the human U3 snoRNP-associated 55-kDa protein. The isolated cDNA codes for a novel nucleolar protein which is specifically associated with the U3 snoRNA. This protein, referred to as hU3-55k, is the first characterized U3 snoRNP-specific protein from humans. hU3-55k is a new member of the family of WD-40 repeat proteins and is conserved throughout evolution. It appears that the C-terminal end of hU3-55k is required for nucleolar localization and U3 snoRNA binding.

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