The dsRBP and inactive editor ADR-1 utilizes dsRNA binding to regulate A-to-I RNA editing across the C. elegans transcriptome.
ABSTRACT: Inadequate adenosine-to-inosine editing of noncoding regions occurs in disease but is often uncorrelated with ADAR levels, underscoring the need to study deaminase-independent control of editing. C. elegans have two ADAR proteins, ADR-2 and the theoretically catalytically inactive ADR-1. Using high-throughput RNA sequencing of wild-type and adr mutant worms, we expand the repertoire of C. elegans edited transcripts over 5-fold and confirm that ADR-2 is the only active deaminase in vivo. Despite lacking deaminase function, ADR-1 affects editing of over 60 adenosines within the 3' UTRs of 16 different mRNAs. Furthermore, ADR-1 interacts directly with ADR-2 substrates, even in the absence of ADR-2, and mutations within its double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) binding domains abolish both binding and editing regulation. We conclude that ADR-1 acts as a major regulator of editing by binding ADR-2 substrates in vivo. These results raise the possibility that other dsRNA binding proteins, including the inactive human ADARs, regulate RNA editing through deaminase-independent mechanisms.
Project description:Purpose: The purpose of this experiment is to expand the repertoire of C. elegans edited transcripts and identify the roles of ADR-1 as indirect regulator of editing and ADR-2 as the only active deaminase in vivo. Methods: Strand-specific RNA sequencing of wild-type and adr mutant worms, followed by a novel RNA variant calling and comparative analysis pipeline. Results: Despite lacking deaminase function, ADR-1 affects editing of over 60 adenosines within the 3’ UTRs of 16 different mRNAs. Furthermore, ADR-1 interacts directly with ADR-2 substrates, even in the absence of ADR-2; and mutations within its dsRNA binding domains abolished both binding and editing regulation. Conclusions: ADR-1 acts as a major regulator of editing by binding ADR-2 substrates in vivo and raises the possibility that other dsRNA binding proteins, including the inactive human ADARs, regulate RNA editing by deaminase-independent mechanisms. Strand-specific RNA sequencing of wild-type and adr mutant worms, followed by a novel RNA variant calling and comparative analysis pipeline.
Project description:Adenosine deaminases that act on RNA (ADARs) convert adenosine to inosine within double-stranded regions of RNA, resulting in increased transcriptomic diversity, as well as protection of cellular double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) from silencing and improper immune activation. The presence of dsRNA-binding domains (dsRBDs) in all ADARs suggests these domains are important for substrate recognition; however, the role of dsRBDs in vivo remains largely unknown. Herein, our studies indicate the Caenorhabditis elegans ADAR enzyme, ADR-2, has low affinity for dsRNA, but interacts with ADR-1, an editing-deficient member of the ADAR family, which has a 100-fold higher affinity for dsRNA. ADR-1 uses one dsRBD to physically interact with ADR-2 and a second dsRBD to bind to dsRNAs, thereby tethering ADR-2 to substrates. ADR-2 interacts with >1200 transcripts in vivo, and ADR-1 is required for 80% of these interactions. Our results identify a novel mode of substrate recognition for ADAR enzymes and indicate that protein-protein interactions can guide substrate recognition for RNA editors.
Project description:In this report, we establish that Drosophila ADAR (adenosine deaminase acting on RNA) forms a dimer on double-stranded (ds) RNA, a process essential for editing activity. The minimum region required for dimerization is the N-terminus and dsRNA-binding domain 1 (dsRBD1). Single point mutations within dsRBD1 abolish RNA-binding activity and dimer formation. These mutations and glycerol gradient analysis indicate that binding to dsRNA is important for dimerization. However, dimerization can be uncoupled from dsRNA-binding activity, as a deletion of the N-terminus (amino acids 1-46) yields a monomeric ADAR that retains the ability to bind dsRNA but is inactive in an editing assay, demonstrating that ADAR is only active as a dimer. Different isoforms of ADAR with different editing activities can form heterodimers and this can have a significant effect on editing in vitro as well as in vivo. We propose a model for ADAR dimerization whereby ADAR monomers first contact dsRNA; however, it is only when the second monomer binds and a dimer is formed that deamination occurs.
Project description:Adenosine-to-inosine RNA editing by ADARs affects thousands of adenosines in an organism's transcriptome. However, adenosines are not edited at equal levels nor do these editing levels correlate well with ADAR expression levels. Therefore, additional mechanisms are utilized by the cell to dictate the editing efficiency at a given adenosine. To examine cis-and trans-acting factors that regulate A-to-I editing levels specifically in neural cells, we utilized the model organism Caenorhabditis elegans We demonstrate that a double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) binding protein, ADR-1, inhibits editing in neurons, which is largely masked when examining editing levels from whole animals. Furthermore, expression of ADR-1 and mRNA expression of the editing target can act synergistically to regulate editing efficiency. In addition, we identify a dsRNA region within the Y75B8A.83' UTR that acts as acis-regulatory element by enhancing ADR-2 editing efficiency. Together, this work identifies mechanisms that regulate editing efficiency of noncoding A-to-I editing sites, which comprise the largest class of ADAR targets.
Project description:ADAR proteins alter gene expression both by catalyzing adenosine (A) to inosine (I) RNA editing and binding to regulatory elements in target RNAs. Loss of ADARs affects neuronal function in all animals studied to date. Caenorhabditis elegans lacking ADARs exhibit reduced chemotaxis, but the targets responsible for this phenotype remain unknown. To identify critical neural ADAR targets in C. elegans, we performed an unbiased assessment of the effects of ADR-2, the only A-to-I editing enzyme in C. elegans, on the neural transcriptome. Development and implementation of publicly available software, SAILOR, identified 7361 A-to-I editing events across the neural transcriptome. Intersecting the neural editome with adr-2 associated gene expression changes, revealed an edited mRNA, clec-41, whose neural expression is dependent on deamination. Restoring clec-41 expression in adr-2 deficient neural cells rescued the chemotaxis defect, providing the first evidence that neuronal phenotypes of ADAR mutants can be caused by altered gene expression.
Project description:Adenosine deaminases that act on RNA (ADARs) are RNA editing enzymes that convert adenosine to inosine in double-stranded RNA (dsRNA). To evaluate effects of ADARs on small RNAs that derive from dsRNA precursors, we performed deep-sequencing, comparing small RNAs from wildtype and ADAR mutant C. elegans. While editing in small RNAs was rare, at least 40% of microRNAs had altered levels in at least one ADAR mutant strain, and miRNAs with significantly altered levels had mRNA targets with correspondingly affected levels. About 40% of siRNAs derived from endogenous genes (endo-siRNAs) also had altered levels in at least one mutant strain, including 63% of Dicer-dependent endo-siRNAs. The 26G class of endo-siRNAs was significantly affected by ADARs, and many altered 26G loci had intronic reads, and histone modifications associated with transcriptional silencing. Our data indicate ADARs, through both direct and indirect mechanisms, are important for maintaining wildtype levels of many small RNAs in C. elegans. Deep sequencing of small RNAs in wild-type (N2), adr-1 null, adr-2 null and adr-1;adr-2 null mixed stage C. elegans
Project description:A-to-I RNA editing is widespread in eukaryotic transcriptomes and plays an essential role in the creation of proteomic and phenotypic diversity. Loss of ADARs, the proteins responsible for A-to-I editing, results in lethality in mammals. In C. elegans, knocking out both ADARs, ADR-1 and ADR-2, results in aberrant behavior and abnormal development. Studies have shown that ADR-2 can actively deaminate dsRNA while ADR-1 cannot. However, as most studies of C. elegans ADARs were performed on worms mutated in both ADAR genes, the effects observed cannot be attributed to a single ADAR or to the interactions between ADAR genes. Therefore, we set to study the effects of each C. elegans ADAR on RNA editing, gene expression, protein levels and the contribution of each of ADAR to the phenotypes observed in worms mutated in both genes, in order to elucidate their distinct functions. We found significant differences in the phenotypes observed in worms mutated in a single ADAR gene. Worms harboring adr-1 mutations have a significant reduction in their lifespan, while worms harboring adr-2 mutations have extended lifespan. We also observed severe abnormalities in vulva formation mainly in adr-1 mutants, and we suggest that these phenotypes are a result of an RNA editing independent function of ADR-1. Mutations in each ADAR resulted in expressional changes in hundreds of genes, and a significant downregulation of edited genes. However, very few changes in the protein levels were observed. In addition, we found that ADR-1 binds many edited genes. Our results suggest that ADR-1 has a significant function in the RNA editing process and by altering editing levels it causes the severe phenotypes that we observed. In contrast, a complete lack of RNA editing is less harmful to the worms. Furthermore, our results indicate that the effect of RNA editing on the protein content in the cell is minor and probably the main purpose of these modifications is to antagonize or enhance other gene regulatory mechanisms that act on RNA. Overall design: RNA was extracted from wildtype C. elegans synchronized to embryo or L4 larval stage. For each stage, 3 independent biological replica RNA samples were used for construction of mRNA libraries.
Project description:ADAR RNA editing enzymes are high-affinity dsRNA-binding proteins that deaminate adenosines to inosines in pre-mRNA hairpins and also exert editing-independent effects. We generated a Drosophila AdarE374A mutant strain encoding a catalytically inactive Adar with CRISPR/Cas9. We demonstrate that Adar adenosine deamination activity is necessary for normal locomotion and prevents age-dependent neurodegeneration. The catalytically inactive protein, when expressed at a higher than physiological level, can rescue neurodegeneration in Adar mutants, suggesting also editing-independent effects. Furthermore, loss of Adar RNA editing activity leads to innate immune induction, indicating that Drosophila Adar, despite being the homolog of mammalian ADAR2, also has functions similar to mammalian ADAR1. The innate immune induction in fly Adar mutants is suppressed by silencing of Dicer-2, which has a RNA helicase domain similar to MDA5 that senses unedited dsRNAs in mammalian Adar1 mutants. Our work demonstrates that the single Adar enzyme in Drosophila unexpectedly has dual functions.
Project description:Adenosine deaminases acting on RNA (ADARs) are editing enzymes that convert adenosine to inosine in duplex RNA, a modification reaction with wide-ranging consequences in RNA function. Understanding of the ADAR reaction mechanism, the origin of editing-site selectivity, and the effect of mutations is limited by the lack of high-resolution structural data for complexes of ADARs bound to substrate RNAs. Here we describe four crystal structures of the human ADAR2 deaminase domain bound to RNA duplexes bearing a mimic of the deamination reaction intermediate. These structures, together with structure-guided mutagenesis and RNA-modification experiments, explain the basis of the ADAR deaminase domain's dsRNA specificity, its base-flipping mechanism, and its nearest-neighbor preferences. In addition, we identified an ADAR2-specific RNA-binding loop near the enzyme active site, thus rationalizing differences in selectivity observed between different ADARs. Finally, our results provide a structural framework for understanding the effects of ADAR mutations associated with human disease.
Project description:ADAR proteins alter gene expression both via catalyzing adenosine-to-inosine RNA editing and in an editing-independent manner by binding to target RNAs. Loss of ADARs affects neuronal function in all animals studied to date. To identify important neuronal targets in C. elegans, we performed the first unbiased assessment of the effects of ADR-2, the C. elegans editing enzyme, on the neural transcriptome. We identified the neural editome and gene expression changes associated with the loss of adr-2. As C. elegans lacking adr-2 exhibit reduced chemotaxis, our studies focused on targets that regulate this process. We identified an edited mRNA, clec-41, whose expression is dependent on ADR-2. Expressing clec-41 in adr-2 deficient neural cells restored chemotaxis. This study is the first of its kind in the RNA editing field to span from developing novel methodology for tissue-specific target identification to organismal behavior, significantly advancing our understanding of ADAR functions in neural cells. Overall design: Strand-specific editing sites and differential expression analysis was done on triplicate WT (wildtype) and Adr2- (control) C. elegans neural cells.