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EMBO Rep. 2003 Dec;4(12):1150-5. Epub 2003 Nov 14.

X-ray structure and activity of the yeast Pop2 protein: a nuclease subunit of the mRNA deadenylase complex.

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European Molecular Biology Laboratory, Meyerhofstrasse 1, D-69117 Heidelberg, Germany.


In Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a large complex, known as the Ccr4-Not complex, containing two nucleases, is responsible for mRNA deadenylation. One of these nucleases is called Pop2 and has been identified by similarity with PARN, a human poly(A) nuclease. Here, we present the crystal structure of the nuclease domain of Pop2 at 2.3 A resolution. The domain has the fold of the DnaQ family and represents the first structure of an RNase from the DEDD superfamily. Despite the presence of two non-canonical residues in the active site, the domain displays RNase activity on a broad range of RNA substrates. Site-directed mutagenesis of active-site residues demonstrates the intrinsic ability of the Pop2 RNase D domain to digest RNA. This first structure of a nuclease involved in the 3'-5' deadenylation of mRNA in yeast provides information for the understanding of the mechanism by which the Ccr4-Not complex achieves its functions.

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