Phylogenetic analysis and evolution of RNase P RNA in proteobacteria.
ABSTRACT: The secondary structures of the eubacterial RNase P RNAs are being elucidated by a phylogenetic comparative approach. Sequences of genes encoding RNase P RNA from each of the recognized subgroups (alpha, beta, gamma, and delta) of the proteobacteria have now been determined. These sequences allow the refinement, to nearly the base pair level, of the phylogenetic model for RNase P RNA secondary structure. Evolutionary change among the RNase P RNAs was found to occur primarily in four discrete structural domains that are peripheral to a highly conserved core structure. The new sequences were used to examine critically the proposed similarity (C. Guerrier-Takada, N. Lumelsky, and S. Altman, Science 246:1578-1584, 1989) between a portion of RNase P RNA and the "exit site" of the 23S rRNA of Escherichia coli. Phylogenetic comparisons indicate that these sequences are not homologous and that any similarity in the structures is, at best, tenuous.
Project description:RNase P is the ribonucleoprotein enzyme that cleaves precursor sequences from the 5' ends of pre-tRNAs. In Bacteria, the RNA subunit is the catalytic moiety. Eucaryal and archaeal RNase P activities copurify with RNAs, which have not been shown to be catalytic. We report here the analysis of the RNase P RNA from the thermoacidophilic archaeon Sulfolobus acidocaldarius. The holoenzyme was highly purified, and extracted RNA was used to identify the RNase P RNA gene. The nucleotide sequence of the gene was determined, and a secondary structure is proposed. The RNA was not observed to be catalytic by itself, but it nevertheless is similar in sequence and structure to bacterial RNase P RNA. The marked similarity of the RNase P RNA from S. acidocaldarius and that from Haloferax volcanii, the other known archael RNase P RNA, supports the coherence of Archaea as a phylogenetic domain.
Project description:Ribonuclease P (RNase P) is the ribonucleoprotein enzyme that cleaves 5'-leader sequences from precursor-tRNAs. Bacterial and eukaryal RNase P RNAs differ fundamentally in that the former, but not the latter, are capable of catalyzing pre-tRNA maturation in vitro in the absence of proteins. An explanation of these functional differences will be assisted by a detailed comparison of bacterial and eukaryal RNase P RNA structures. However, the structures of eukaryal RNase P RNAs remain poorly characterized, compared to their bacterial and archaeal homologs. Hence, we have taken a phylogenetic-comparative approach to refine the secondary structures of eukaryal RNase P RNAs. To this end, 20 new RNase P RNA sequences have been determined from species of ascomycetous fungi representative of the genera Arxiozyma, Clavispora, Kluyveromyces, Pichia, Saccharomyces, Saccharomycopsis, Torulaspora, Wickerhamia, and Zygosaccharomyces. Phylogenetic-comparative analysis of these and other sequences refines previous eukaryal RNase P RNA secondary structure models. Patterns of sequence conservation and length variation refine the minimum-consensus model of the core eukaryal RNA structure. In comparison to bacterial RNase P RNAs, the eukaryal homologs lack RNA structural elements thought to be critical for both substrate binding and catalysis. Nonetheless, the eukaryal RNA retains the main features of the catalytic core of the bacterial RNase P. This indicates that the eukaryal RNA remains intrinsically a ribozyme.
Project description:Sequences encoding RNase P RNAs from representatives of the last remaining classical phyla of Bacteria have been determined, completing a general phylogenetic survey of RNase P RNA sequence and structure. This broad sampling of RNase P RNAs allows some refinement of the secondary structure, and reveals patterns in the evolutionary variation of sequences and secondary structures. Although the sequences range from 100 to <25% identical to one another, and although only 40 of the nucleotides are invariant, there is considerable conservation of the underlying core of the RNA sequence. RNase P RNAs, like group I intron RNAs but unlike ribosomal RNAs, transfer RNAs or other highly conserved RNAs, are quite variable in secondary structure outside of this conserved structural core. Conservative regions of the RNA evolve by substitution of apparently interchangeable alternative structures, rather than the insertion and deletion of helical elements that occurs in the more variable regions of the RNA. In a remarkable case of convergent molecular evolution, most of the unusual structural elements of type B RNase P RNAs of the low G+C Gram-positive Bacteria have evolved independently in Thermomicrobium roseum , a member of the green non-sulfur Bacteria.
Project description:The catalytic RNA component of bacterial RNase P is responsible for the removal of 5' leader sequences from precursor tRNAs. As part of an on-going phylogenetic comparative characterization of bacterial RNase P, the genes encoding RNase P RNA from the thermophiles Thermotoga maritima, Thermotoga neapolitana, Thermus aquaticus, and a mesophilic relative of the latter, Deinococcus radiodurans, have been cloned and sequenced. RNAs transcribed from these genes in vitro are catalytically active in the absence of other components. Active holoenzymes have been reconstituted from the T.aquaticus and T.maritima RNAs and the protein component of RNase P from Escherichia coli. The RNase P RNAs of T.aquaticus and T.martima, synthesized in vitro, were characterized biochemically and shown to be inherently resistant to thermal disruption. Several features of these RNAs suggest mechanisms contributing to thermostability. The new sequences provide correlations that refine the secondary structure model of bacterial RNase P RNA.
Project description:Although the structure of the catalytic RNA component of ribonuclease P has been well characterized in Bacteria, it has been little studied in other organisms, such as the Archaea. We have determined the sequences encoding RNase P RNA in eight euryarchaeal species: Halococcus morrhuae, Natronobacterium gregoryi, Halobacterium cutirubrum, Halobacteriurn trapanicum, Methanobacterium thermoautotrophicum strains deltaH and Marburg, Methanothermus fervidus and Thermococcus celer strain AL-1. On the basis of these and previously available sequences from Sulfolobus acidocaldarius, Haloferax volcanii and Methanosarcina barkeri the secondary structure of RNase P RNA in Archaea has been analyzed by phylogenetic comparative analysis. The archaeal RNAs are similar in both primary and secondary structure to bacterial RNase P RNAs, but unlike their bacterial counterparts these archaeal RNase P RNAs are not by themselves catalytically proficient in vitro.
Project description:Phylogenetic comparative analyses of RNase P RNA-encoding gene sequences from Chlorobium limicola, Chlorobium tepidum, Bacteroides thetaiotaomicron, and Flavobacterium yabuuchiae refine the secondary structure model of the general (eu)bacterial RNase P RNA and show that a highly conserved feature of that RNA is not essential. Two helices, comprised of 2 base pairs each, are added to the secondary structure model and form part of a cruciform in the RNA. Novel sequence variations in the B. thetaiotaomicron and F. yabuuchiae RNA indicate the likelihood that all secondary structure resulting from canonical base-pairing has been detected: there are no remaining unpaired, contiguous, canonical complementarities in the structure model common to all bacterial RNase P RNAs. A nomenclature for the elements of the completed secondary structure model is proposed. The Chlorobium RNase P RNAs lack a stem-loop structure that is otherwise universally present and highly conserved in structure in other (eu)bacterial RNase P RNAs. The Chlorobium RNAs are nevertheless catalytic, with kinetic properties similar to those of RNase P RNAs of Escherichia coli and other Bacteria. Removal of this stem-loop structure from the E. coli RNA affects neither its affinity for nor its catalytic rate for cleavage of a precursor transfer RNA substrate. These results show that this structural element does not play a direct role in substrate binding or catalysis.
Project description:RNase MRP is a ribonucleoprotein enzyme involved in processing precursor rRNA in eukaryotes. To facilitate our structure-function analysis of RNase MRP from Saccharomyces cerevisiae, we have determined the likely secondary structure of the RNA component by a phylogenetic approach in which we sequenced all or part of the RNase MRP RNAs from 17 additional species of the Saccharomycetaceae family. The structure deduced from these sequences contains the helices previously suggested to be common to the RNA subunit of RNase MRP and the related RNA subunit of RNase P, an enzyme cleaving tRNA precursors. However, outside this common region, the structure of RNase MRP RNA determined here differs from a previously proposed universal structure for RNase MRPs. Chemical and enzymatic structure probing analyses were consistent with our revised secondary structure. Comparison of all known RNase MRP RNA sequences revealed three regions with highly conserved nucleotides. Two of these regions are part of a helix implicated in RNA catalysis in RNase P, suggesting that RNase MRP may cleave rRNA using a similar catalytic mechanism.
Project description:The structure of RNase P protein from the hyperthermophilic bacterium Thermotoga maritima was determined at 1.2-A resolution by using x-ray crystallography. This protein structure is from an ancestral-type RNase P and bears remarkable similarity to the recently determined structures of RNase P proteins from bacteria that have the distinct, Bacillus type of RNase P. These two types of protein span the extent of bacterial RNase P diversity, so the results generalize the structure of the bacterial RNase P protein. The broad phylogenetic conservation of structure and distribution of potential RNA-binding elements in the RNase P proteins indicate that all of these homologous proteins bind to their cognate RNAs primarily by interaction with the phylogenetically conserved core of the RNA. The protein is found to dimerize through an extensive, well-ordered interface. This dimerization may reflect a mechanism of thermal stability of the protein before assembly with the RNA moiety of the holoenzyme.
Project description:Previous eucaryotic RNase P RNA secondary structural models have been based on limited diversity, representing only two of the approximately 30 phylogenetic kingdoms of the domain Eucarya. To elucidate a more generally applicable structure, we used biochemical, bioinformatic, and molecular approaches to obtain RNase P RNA sequences from diverse organisms including representatives of six additional kingdoms of eucaryotes. Novel sequences were from acanthamoeba (Acathamoeba castellanii, Balamuthia mandrillaris, Filamoeba nolandi), animals (Caenorhabditis elegans, Drosophila melanogaster), alveolates (Theileria annulata, Babesia bovis), conosids (Dictyostelium discoideum, Physarum polycephalum), trichomonads (Trichomonas vaginalis), microsporidia (Encephalitozoon cuniculi), and diplomonads (Giardia intestinalis). An improved alignment of eucaryal RNase P RNA sequences was assembled and used for statistical and comparative structural analysis. The analysis identifies a conserved core structure of eucaryal RNase P RNA that has been maintained throughout evolution and indicates that covariation in size occurs between some structural elements of the RNA. Eucaryal RNase P RNA contains regions of highly variable length and structure reminiscent of expansion segments found in rRNA. The eucaryal RNA has been remodeled through evolution as a simplified version of the structure found in bacterial and archaeal RNase P RNAs.
Project description:The sequences and structures of RNase P RNAs of some Gram-positive bacteria, e.g. Bacillus subtilis, are very different than those of other bacteria. In order to expand our understanding of the structure and evolution of RNase P RNA in Gram-positive bacteria, gene sequences encoding RNase P RNAs from 10 additional species from this evolutionary group have been determined, doubling the number of sequences available for comparative analysis. The enlarged data set allows refinement of the secondary structure model of these unusual RNase P RNAs and the identification of potential tertiary interactions between P10.1 and L12, and between L5.1 and L15.1. The newly-obtained sequences suggest that RNase P RNA underwent an abrupt, dramatic restructuring in the ancestry of the low-G+C Gram-positive bacteria after the divergence of the branches leading to the 'Clostridia and relatives' and the remaining low-G+C Gram-positive species. The unusual structures of the RNase P RNAs of Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae and M.floccularre are apparently derived from RNAs with Bacillus-like structure rather than from intermediate, partially restructured ancestral RNAs. The structure of the RNase P RNA from the photosynthetic Heliobacillus mobilis supports the relationship of this specie with Bacillus and Staphylococcus rather than the 'Clostridia and relatives' as suggested by the sequences of their small-subunit ribosomal RNAs.