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Zhang L.,China National Institute of Biological Sciences | Wu C.,China National Institute of Biological Sciences | Wu C.,China Agricultural University | Wu C.,Key Laboratory of RNA Biology | And 5 more authors.
Genes and Development | Year: 2016

The eukaryotic ribosomal RNA (rRNA) is associated cotranscriptionally with numerous factors into an enormous 90S preribosomal particle that conducts early processing of small ribosomal subunits. The assembly pathway and structure of the 90S particle is poorly understood. Here, we affinity-purified and analyzed the constituents of yeast 90S particles that were assembled on a series of plasmid-encoded 3′-truncated pre-18S RNAs. We determined the assembly point of 65 proteins and the U3, U14, and snR30 small nucleolar RNAs (snoRNAs), revealing a stepwise and dynamic assembly map. The 5′ external transcribed spacer (ETS) alone can nucleate a large complex. When the 18S rRNA is nearly complete, the 90S structure undergoes a dramatic reorganization, releasing U14, snR30, and 14 protein factors that bind earlier. We also identified a reference state of 90S that is fully assembled yet has not undergone 5′ETS processing. The assembly map present here provides a new framework to understand small subunit biogenesis. © 2016 Zhang et al.

Wang J.,Key Laboratory of RNA Biology | Wang J.,CAS Institute of Biophysics | Li J.,Key Laboratory of RNA Biology | Li J.,CAS Institute of Biophysics | And 14 more authors.
Cell | Year: 2015

Summary Bacteria acquire memory of viral invaders by incorporating invasive DNA sequence elements into the host CRISPR locus, generating a new spacer within the CRISPR array. We report on the structures of Cas1-Cas2-dual-forked DNA complexes in an effort toward understanding how the protospacer is sampled prior to insertion into the CRISPR locus. Our study reveals a protospacer DNA comprising a 23-bp duplex bracketed by tyrosine residues, together with anchored flanking 3′ overhang segments. The PAM-complementary sequence in the 3′ overhang is recognized by the Cas1a catalytic subunits in a base-specific manner, and subsequent cleavage at positions 5 nt from the duplex boundary generates a 33-nt DNA intermediate that is incorporated into the CRISPR array via a cut-and-paste mechanism. Upon protospacer binding, Cas1-Cas2 undergoes a significant conformational change, generating a flat surface conducive to proper protospacer recognition. Here, our study provides important structure-based mechanistic insights into PAM-dependent spacer acquisition. © 2015 Elsevier Inc.

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