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The nematode eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4E/G complex works with a trans-spliced leader stem-loop to enable efficient translation of trimethylguanosine-capped RNAs.


ABSTRACT: Eukaryotic mRNA translation begins with recruitment of the 40S ribosome complex to the mRNA 5' end through the eIF4F initiation complex binding to the 5' m(7)G-mRNA cap. Spliced leader (SL) RNA trans splicing adds a trimethylguanosine (TMG) cap and a sequence, the SL, to the 5' end of mRNAs. Efficient translation of TMG-capped mRNAs in nematodes requires the SL sequence. Here we define a core set of nucleotides and a stem-loop within the 22-nucleotide nematode SL that stimulate translation of mRNAs with a TMG cap. The structure and core nucleotides are conserved in other nematode SLs and correspond to regions of SL1 required for early Caenorhabditis elegans development. These SL elements do not facilitate translation of m(7)G-capped RNAs in nematodes or TMG-capped mRNAs in mammalian or plant translation systems. Similar stem-loop structures in phylogenetically diverse SLs are predicted. We show that the nematode eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4E/G (eIF4E/G) complex enables efficient translation of the TMG-SL RNAs in diverse in vitro translation systems. TMG-capped mRNA translation is determined by eIF4E/G interaction with the cap and the SL RNA, although the SL does not increase the affinity of eIF4E/G for capped RNA. These results suggest that the mRNA 5' untranslated region (UTR) can play a positive and novel role in translation initiation through interaction with the eIF4E/G complex in nematodes and raise the issue of whether eIF4E/G-RNA interactions play a role in the translation of other eukaryotic mRNAs.

SUBMITTER: Wallace A 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC2849463 | BioStudies | 2010-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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