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Mol Cell Biol. 2006 Jan;26(2):513-22.

The splicing factor Prp43p, a DEAH box ATPase, functions in ribosome biogenesis.

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Department of Molecular Genetics and Cell Biology, University of Chicago, 920 E. 58th St., Chicago, Illinois 60637, USA.


Biogenesis of the small and large ribosomal subunits requires modification, processing, and folding of pre-rRNA to yield mature rRNA. Here, we report that efficient biogenesis of both small- and large-subunit rRNAs requires the DEAH box ATPase Prp43p, a pre-mRNA splicing factor. By steady-state analysis, a cold-sensitive prp43 mutant accumulates 35S pre-rRNA and depletes 20S, 27S, and 7S pre-rRNAs, precursors to the small- and large-subunit rRNAs. By pulse-chase analysis, the prp43 mutant is defective in the formation of 20S and 27S pre-rRNAs and in the accumulation of 18S and 25S mature rRNAs. Wild-type Prp43p immunoprecipitates pre-rRNAs and mature rRNAs, indicating a direct role in ribosome biogenesis. The Prp43p-Q423N mutant immunoprecipitates 27SA2 pre-rRNA threefold more efficiently than the wild type, suggesting a critical role for Prp43p at the earliest stages of large-subunit biogenesis. Consistent with an early role for Prp43p in ribosome biogenesis, Prp43p immunoprecipitates the majority of snoRNAs; further, compared to the wild type, the prp43 mutant generally immunoprecipitates the snoRNAs more efficiently. In the prp43 mutant, the snoRNA snR64 fails to methylate residue C2337 in 27S pre-rRNA, suggesting a role in snoRNA function. We propose that Prp43p promotes recycling of snoRNAs and biogenesis factors during pre-rRNA processing, similar to its recycling role in pre-mRNA splicing. The dual function for Prp43p in the cell raises the possibility that ribosome biogenesis and pre-mRNA splicing may be coordinately regulated.

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