Format

Send to

Choose Destination
EMBO J. 2016 Oct 4;35(19):2104-2119. Epub 2016 Aug 5.

NSUN3 and ABH1 modify the wobble position of mt-tRNAMet to expand codon recognition in mitochondrial translation.

Author information

1
Institute for Molecular Biology, University Medical Center Göttingen Georg-August-University, Göttingen, Germany.
2
Department of Physical Biochemistry, Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Göttingen, Germany.
3
Institute for Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry, Georg-August-University, Göttingen, Germany Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Göttingen, Germany.
4
Institute for Cellular Biochemistry, University Medical Center Göttingen Georg-August-University, Göttingen, Germany.
5
Max Planck Institute for Biophysical Chemistry, Göttingen, Germany Institute for Cellular Biochemistry, University Medical Center Göttingen Georg-August-University, Göttingen, Germany Göttingen Centre for Molecular Biosciences, Georg-August-University, Göttingen, Germany.
6
Institute for Organic and Biomolecular Chemistry, Georg-August-University, Göttingen, Germany Markus.Bohnsack@med.uni-goettingen.de claudia.hoebartner@chemie.uni-goettingen.de.
7
Institute for Molecular Biology, University Medical Center Göttingen Georg-August-University, Göttingen, Germany Göttingen Centre for Molecular Biosciences, Georg-August-University, Göttingen, Germany Markus.Bohnsack@med.uni-goettingen.de claudia.hoebartner@chemie.uni-goettingen.de.

Abstract

Mitochondrial gene expression uses a non-universal genetic code in mammals. Besides reading the conventional AUG codon, mitochondrial (mt-)tRNAMet mediates incorporation of methionine on AUA and AUU codons during translation initiation and on AUA codons during elongation. We show that the RNA methyltransferase NSUN3 localises to mitochondria and interacts with mt-tRNAMet to methylate cytosine 34 (C34) at the wobble position. NSUN3 specifically recognises the anticodon stem loop (ASL) of the tRNA, explaining why a mutation that compromises ASL basepairing leads to disease. We further identify ALKBH1/ABH1 as the dioxygenase responsible for oxidising m5C34 of mt-tRNAMet to generate an f5C34 modification. In vitro codon recognition studies with mitochondrial translation factors reveal preferential utilisation of m5C34 mt-tRNAMet in initiation. Depletion of either NSUN3 or ABH1 strongly affects mitochondrial translation in human cells, implying that modifications generated by both enzymes are necessary for mt-tRNAMet function. Together, our data reveal how modifications in mt-tRNAMet are generated by the sequential action of NSUN3 and ABH1, allowing the single mitochondrial tRNAMet to recognise the different codons encoding methionine.

KEYWORDS:

ABH1; NSUN3; RNA modification; mitochondria; translation

PMID:
27497299
PMCID:
PMC5048346
DOI:
10.15252/embj.201694885
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for HighWire Icon for PubMed Central
Loading ...
Support Center