Trypanosome capping enzymes display a novel two-domain structure.
ABSTRACT: The ubiquitous m7G cap of eukaryotic mRNAs and of precursors to the spliceosomal small nuclear RNAs (snRNAs) is the result of an essential RNA modification acquired during transcript elongation. In trypanosomes, the m7G cap is restricted to the spliced leader (SL) RNA and the precursors of U2, U3, and U4 snRNAs. mRNA capping in these organisms occurs posttranscriptionally by trans splicing, which transfers the capped SL sequence to the 5' ends of all mRNAs. The SL cap is the most elaborate cap structure known in nature and has been shown to consist of an m7G residue followed by four methylated nucleotides. Using Crithidia fasciculata, we have characterized and purified the guanylyltransferase (capping enzyme), which transfers GMP from GTP to the diphosphate end of RNA. The corresponding gene codes for a protein of 697 amino acids, with the carboxy-terminal half of the C. fasciculata guanylyltransferase containing the six signature motifs previously identified in yeast capping enzymes. The amino-terminal half contains a domain that displays no resemblance to any other domain associated with capping enzymes. Intriguingly, this region harbors a consensus sequence for a phosphate-binding loop which is found in ATP- and GTP-binding proteins. This two-domain structure is also present in the Trypanosoma brucei capping enzyme, which shows 44% overall identity with the C. fasciculata capping enzyme. Thus, this structure appears to be common to all trypanosomatid protozoa and defines a novel class of capping enzymes.
Project description:The 5' terminus of trypanosome mRNA is protected by a hypermethylated cap 4 derived from spliced leader (SL) RNA. Trypanosoma brucei nuclear capping enzyme with cap guanylyltransferase and methyltransferase activities (TbCgm1) modifies the 5'-diphosphate RNA (ppRNA) end to generate an m7G SL RNA cap. Here we show that T. brucei cytoplasmic capping enzyme (TbCe1) is a bifunctional 5'-RNA kinase and guanylyltransferase that transfers a ?-phosphate from ATP to pRNA to form ppRNA, which is then capped by transfer of GMP from GTP to the RNA ?-phosphate. A Walker A-box motif in the N-terminal domain is essential for the RNA kinase activity and is targeted preferentially to a SL RNA sequence with a 5'-terminal methylated nucleoside. Silencing of TbCe1 leads to accumulation of uncapped mRNAs, consistent with selective capping of mRNA that has undergone trans-splicing and decapping. We identify T. brucei mRNA decapping enzyme (TbDcp2) that cleaves m7GDP from capped RNA to generate pRNA, a substrate for TbCe1. TbDcp2 can also remove GDP from unmethylated capped RNA but is less active at a mature cap 4 end and thus may function in RNA cap quality surveillance. Our results establish the enzymology and relevant protein catalysts of a cytoplasmic recapping pathway that has broad implications for the functional reactivation of processed mRNA ends.
Project description:Flaviviruses are small, capped positive sense RNA viruses that replicate in the cytoplasm of infected cells. Dengue virus and other related flaviviruses have evolved RNA capping enzymes to form the viral RNA cap structure that protects the viral genome and directs efficient viral polyprotein translation. The N-terminal domain of NS5 possesses the methyltransferase and guanylyltransferase activities necessary for forming mature RNA cap structures. The mechanism for flavivirus guanylyltransferase activity is currently unknown, and how the capping enzyme binds its diphosphorylated RNA substrate is important for deciphering how the flavivirus guanylyltransferase functions. In this report we examine how flavivirus NS5 N-terminal capping enzymes bind to the 5' end of the viral RNA using a fluorescence polarization-based RNA binding assay. We observed that the K(D) for RNA binding is approximately 200 nM Dengue, Yellow Fever, and West Nile virus capping enzymes. Removal of one or both of the 5' phosphates reduces binding affinity, indicating that the terminal phosphates contribute significantly to binding. RNA binding affinity is negatively affected by the presence of GTP or ATP and positively affected by S-adensyl methoninine (SAM). Structural superpositioning of the dengue virus capping enzyme with the Vaccinia virus VP39 protein bound to RNA suggests how the flavivirus capping enzyme may bind RNA, and mutagenesis analysis of residues in the putative RNA binding site demonstrate that several basic residues are critical for RNA binding. Several mutants show differential binding to 5' di-, mono-, and un-phosphorylated RNAs. The mode of RNA binding appears similar to that found with other methyltransferase enzymes, and a discussion of diphosphorylated RNA binding is presented.
Project description:The RNA-dependent RNA polymerase L protein of vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV), a prototypic nonsegmented negative strand (NNS) RNA virus classified into the Rhabdoviridae family, has been used to investigate the fundamental molecular mechanisms of NNS RNA viral mRNA synthesis and processing. In vitro studies on mRNA cap formation with the VSV L protein eventually led to the discovery of the unconventional mRNA capping pathway catalyzed by the guanosine 5'-triphosphatase and RNA:GDP polyribonucleotidyltransferase (PRNTase) activities. The PRNTase activity is a novel enzymatic activity, which transfers 5'-monophosphorylated (p-) RNA from 5'-triphosphorylated (ppp-) RNA to GDP to form 5'-capped RNA (GpppRNA) in a viral mRNA-start sequence-dependent manner. This unconventional capping (pRNA transfer) reaction with PRNTase can be experimentally distinguished from the conventional capping (GMP transfer) reaction with eukaryotic GTP:RNA guanylyltransferase (GTase) on the basis of the following differences in their substrate specificity for the cap formation: PRNTase uses GDP and pppRNA, but not ppRNA, whereas GTase employs GTP, but not GDP, and ppRNA. The pRNA transfer reaction with PRNTase proceeds through a covalent enzyme-pRNA intermediate with a phosphoamide bond. Hence, to prove the PRNTase activity, it is necessary to demonstrate the following consecutive steps separately: (1) the enzyme forms a covalent enzyme-pRNA intermediate, and (2) the intermediate transfers pRNA to GDP. This article describes the methods for in vitro transcription and capping with the recombinant VSV L protein, which permit detailed characterization of its enzymatic reactions and mapping of active sites of its enzymatic domains. It is expected that these systems are adaptable to rhabdoviruses and, by extension, other NNS RNA viruses belonging to different families.
Project description:BACKGROUND: Antheraea mylitta cytoplasmic polyhedrosis virus (AmCPV), a cypovirus of Reoviridae family, infects non mulberry Indian silk worm, Antheraea mylitta, and contains eleven segmented double stranded RNA in its genome (S1-S11). Some of its genome segments (S1-S3, and S6-S11) have been previously characterized but genome segment encoding the viral guanylyltransferase which helps in RNA capping has not been characterized. RESULTS: In this study genome segment 5 (S5) of AmCPV was converted to cDNA, cloned and sequenced. S5 consisted of 2180 nucleotides, with one long ORF of 1818 nucleotides and could encode a protein of 606 amino acids with molecular mass of ~65 kDa (p65). Bioinformatics analysis showed presence of KLRS and HxnH motifs as observed in some other reoviral guanylyltransferase and suggests that S5 may encodes viral guanylyltransferase. The ORF of S5 was expressed in E. coli as 65 kDa his tagged fusion protein, purified through Ni-NTA chromatography and polyclonal antibody was raised. Immunoblot analysis of virion particles with the purified antibody showed specific immunoreactive band and suggests p65 as a viral structural protein. Functional analysis showed that recombinant p65 possesses guanylyltransferase activity, and transfers GMP moiety to the 5' diphosphate (A/G) ended viral RNA after the formation of p65-GMP complex for capping. Kinetic analysis showed K(m) of this enzyme for GTP and RNA was 34.24 uM and 98.35 nM, respectively. Site directed mutagenesis at K21A in KLRS motif, and H93A or H105A in HxnH motif completely abolished the autoguanylylation activity and indicates importance of these residues at these sites. Thermodynamic analysis showed p65-GTP interaction was primarily driven by enthalpy (ΔH = -399.1 ± 4.1 kJ/mol) whereas the p65-RNA interaction by favorable entropy (0.043 ± 0.0049 kJ/ mol). CONCLUSION: Viral capping enzymes play a critical role in the post transcriptional or post replication modification in case of RNA virus. Our results of cloning, sequencing and functional analysis of AmCPV S5 indicates that S5 encoded p65 through its guanylyltransferase activity can transfer guanine residue to the 5' end of viral RNA for capping. Further studies will help to understand complete capping process of cypoviral RNA during viral replication within the viral capsid.
Project description:This review focuses on the spliced leader (SL) RNA and uridylic acid-rich small nuclear RNAs (U-snRNAs) involved in pre-mRNA processing in trypanosomatid protozoa, with particular emphasis on the mechanism of transcription and cap formation. The SL RNA plays a central role in mRNA biogenesis by providing the unique cap 4 structure to the 5' end of all mRNAs by trans-splicing. The trimethylguanosine capped U-snRNAs, on the other hand, represent an unusual example among eukaryotic snRNAs in that they are transcribed by RNA polymerase III. This implies the existence of a distinctive mechanism for capping enzyme selection by the transcriptional machinery. Furthermore, the transcription units of U-snRNA genes offer yet another example of the variety of choices that have been established during eukaryotic evolution, namely that an upstream tRNA gene or tRNA-like gene provides extragenic promoter elements for a downstream small RNA gene.
Project description:The 5' m7G cap is an evolutionarily conserved modification of eukaryotic mRNA. Decades of research have established that the m7G cap serves as a unique molecular module that recruits cellular proteins and mediates cap-related biological functions such as pre-mRNA processing, nuclear export and cap-dependent protein synthesis. Only recently has the role of the cap 2'O methylation as an identifier of self RNA in the innate immune system against foreign RNA has become clear. The discovery of the cytoplasmic capping machinery suggests a novel level of control network. These new findings underscore the importance of a proper cap structure in the synthesis of functional messenger RNA. In this review, we will summarize the current knowledge of the biological roles of mRNA caps in eukaryotic cells. We will also discuss different means that viruses and their host cells use to cap their RNA and the application of these capping machineries to synthesize functional mRNA. Novel applications of RNA capping enzymes in the discovery of new RNA species and sequencing the microbiome transcriptome will also be discussed. We will end with a summary of novel findings in RNA capping and the questions these findings pose.
Project description:In cytoplasm, the survival of motor neuron (SMN) complex delivers pre-small nuclear RNAs (pre-snRNAs) to the heptameric Sm ring for the assembly of the ring complex on pre-snRNAs at the conserved Sm site [A(U)4-6G]. Gemin5, a WD40 protein component of the SMN complex, is responsible for recognizing pre-snRNAs. In addition, Gemin5 has been reported to specifically bind to the m7G cap. In this study, we show that the WD40 domain of Gemin5 is both necessary and sufficient for binding the Sm site of pre-snRNAs by isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC) and mutagenesis assays. We further determined the crystal structures of the WD40 domain of Gemin5 in complex with the Sm site or m7G cap of pre-snRNA, which reveal that the WD40 domain of Gemin5 recognizes the Sm site and m7G cap of pre-snRNAs via two distinct binding sites by respective base-specific interactions. In addition, we also uncovered a novel role of Gemin5 in escorting the truncated forms of U1 pre-snRNAs for proper disposal. Overall, the elucidated Gemin5 structures will contribute to a better understanding of Gemin5 in small nuclear ribonucleic protein (snRNP) biogenesis as well as, potentially, other cellular activities.
Project description:In higher eukaryotes the biogenesis of spliceosomal UsnRNPs involves a nucleocytoplasmic shuttling cycle. After the m7G-cap-dependent export of the snRNAs U1, U2, U4 and U5 to the cytoplasm, each of these snRNAs associates with seven Sm proteins. Subsequently, the m7G-cap is hypermethylated to the 2,2,7-trimethylguanosine (m3G)-cap. The import adaptor snurportin1 recognises the m3G-cap and facilitates the nuclear import of the UsnRNPs by binding to importin-beta. Here we report the crystal structure of the m3G-cap-binding domain of snurportin1 with bound m3GpppG at 2.4 A resolution, revealing a structural similarity to the mRNA-guanyly-transferase. Snurportin1 binds both the hypermethylated cap and the first nucleotide of the RNA in a stacked conformation. This binding mode differs significantly from that of the m7G-cap-binding proteins Cap-binding protein 20 (CBP20), eukaryotic initiation factor 4E (eIF4E) and viral protein 39 (VP39). The specificity of the m3G-cap recognition by snurportin1 was evaluated by fluorescence spectroscopy, demonstrating the importance of a highly solvent exposed tryptophan for the discrimination of m7G-capped RNAs. The critical role of this tryptophan and as well of a tryptophan continuing the RNA base stack was confirmed by nuclear import assays and cap-binding activity tests using several snurportin1 mutants.
Project description:mRNA cap 1 2'-O-ribose methylation is a widespread modification that is implicated in processing, trafficking, and translational control in eukaryotic systems. The eukaryotic enzyme has yet to be identified. In kinetoplastid flagellates trans-splicing of spliced leader (SL) to polycistronic precursors conveys a hypermethylated cap 4, including a cap 0 m7G and seven additional methylations on the first 4 nucleotides, to all nuclear mRNAs. We report the first eukaryotic cap 1 2'-O-ribose methyltransferase, TbMTr1, a member of a conserved family of viral and eukaryotic enzymes. Recombinant TbMTr1 methylates the ribose of the first nucleotide of an m7G-capped substrate. Knockdowns and null mutants of TbMTr1 in Trypanosoma brucei grow normally, with loss of 2'-O-ribose methylation at cap 1 on substrate SL RNA and U1 small nuclear RNA. TbMTr1-null cells have an accumulation of cap 0 substrate without further methylation, while spliced mRNA is modified efficiently at position 4 in the absence of 2'-O-ribose methylation at position 1; downstream cap 4 methylations are independent of cap 1. Based on TbMTr1-green fluorescent protein localization, 2'-O-ribose methylation at position 1 occurs in the nucleus. Accumulation of 3'-extended SL RNA substrate indicates a delay in processing and suggests a synergistic role for cap 1 in maturation.
Project description:The GDP polyribonucleotidyltransferase (PRNTase) domain of the multifunctional L protein of rhabdoviruses, such as vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV) and rabies virus, catalyzes the transfer of 5'-phospho-RNA (pRNA) from 5'-triphospho-RNA (pppRNA) to GDP via a covalent enzyme-pRNA intermediate to generate a 5'-cap structure (GpppA). Here, using an improved oligo-RNA capping assay with the VSV L protein, we showed that the Michaelis constants for GDP and pppAACAG (VSV mRNA-start sequence) are 0.03 and 0.4 μM, respectively. A competition assay between GDP and GDP analogues in the GpppA formation and pRNA transfer assay using GDP analogues as pRNA acceptors indicated that the PRNTase domain recognizes the C-2-amino group, but not the C-6-oxo group, N-1-hydrogen, or N-7-nitrogen, of GDP for the cap formation. 2,6-Diaminopurine-riboside (DAP), 7-deazaguanosine (7-deaza-G), and 7-methylguanosine (m7G) diphosphates efficiently accepted pRNA, resulting in the formation of DAPpppA, 7-deaza-GpppA, and m7GpppA (cap 0), respectively. Furthermore, either the 2'- or 3'-hydroxyl group of GDP was found to be required for efficient pRNA transfer. A 5'-diphosphate form of antiviral ribavirin weakly inhibited the GpppA formation but did not act as a pRNA acceptor. These results indicate that the PRNTase domain has a unique guanosine-binding mode different from that of eukaryotic mRNA capping enzyme, guanylyltransferase. IMPORTANCE mRNAs of nonsegmented negative-strand (NNS) RNA viruses, such as VSV, possess a fully methylated cap structure, which is required for mRNA stability, efficient translation, and evasion of antiviral innate immunity in host cells. GDP polyribonucleotidyltransferase (PRNTase) is an unconventional mRNA capping enzyme of NNS RNA viruses that is distinct from the eukaryotic mRNA capping enzyme, guanylyltransferase. In this study, we studied the pRNA acceptor specificity of VSV PRNTase using various GDP analogues and identified chemical groups of GDP as essential for the substrate activity. The findings presented here are useful not only for understanding the mechanism of the substrate recognition with PRNTase but also for designing antiviral agents targeting this enzyme.