ABSTRACT: In trypanosomes, mRNAs are processed by spliced leader (SL) trans splicing, in which a capped SL, derived from SL RNA, is spliced onto the 5' end of each mRNA. This process is mediated by the spliceosome, a large and dynamic RNA-protein machinery consisting of small nuclear ribonucleoproteins (snRNPs) and non-snRNP proteins. Due to early evolutionary divergence, the amino acid sequences of trypanosome splicing factors exhibit limited similarity to those of their eukaryotic orthologs making their bioinformatic identification challenging. Most of the ~ 60 protein components that have been characterized thus far are snRNP proteins because, in contrast to individual snRNPs, purification of intact spliceosomes has not been achieved yet. Here, we characterize the non-snRNP PRP19 complex of Trypanosoma brucei. We identified a complex that contained the core subunits PRP19, CDC5, PRL1, and SPF27, as well as PRP17, SKIP and PPIL1. Three of these proteins were newly annotated. The PRP19 complex was associated primarily with the activated spliceosome and, accordingly, SPF27 silencing blocked the first splicing step. Interestingly, SPF27 silencing caused an accumulation of SL RNA with a hypomethylated cap that closely resembled the defect observed previously upon depletion of the cyclin-dependent kinase CRK9, indicating that both proteins may function in spliceosome activation.
Project description:Prp19 is the founding member of the NineTeen Complex, or NTC, which is a spliceosomal subcomplex essential for spliceosome activation. To define Prp19 connectivity and dynamic protein interactions within the spliceosome, we systematically queried the Saccharomyces cerevisiae proteome for Prp19 WD40 domain interaction partners by two-hybrid analysis. We report that in addition to S. cerevisiae Cwc2, the splicing factor Prp17 binds directly to the Prp19 WD40 domain in a 1:1 ratio. Prp17 binds simultaneously with Cwc2 indicating that it is part of the core NTC complex. We also find that the previously uncharacterized protein Urn1 (Dre4 in Schizosaccharomyces pombe) directly interacts with Prp19, and that Dre4 is conditionally required for pre-mRNA splicing in S. pombe. S. pombe Dre4 and S. cerevisiae Urn1 co-purify U2, U5, and U6 snRNAs and multiple splicing factors, and dre4? and urn1? strains display numerous negative genetic interactions with known splicing mutants. The S. pombe Prp19-containing Dre4 complex co-purifies three previously uncharacterized proteins that participate in pre-mRNA splicing, likely before spliceosome activation. Our multi-faceted approach has revealed new low abundance splicing factors connected to NTC function, provides evidence for distinct Prp19 containing complexes, and underscores the role of the Prp19 WD40 domain as a splicing scaffold.
Project description:In trypanosomatids, all mRNAs are processed via trans-splicing, although cis-splicing also occurs. In trans-splicing, a common small exon, the spliced leader (SL), which is derived from a small SL RNA species, is added to all mRNAs. Sm and Lsm proteins are core proteins that bind to U snRNAs and are essential for both these splicing processes. In this study, SmD3- and Lsm3-associated complexes were purified to homogeneity from Leishmania tarentolae. The purified complexes were analyzed by mass spectrometry, and 54 and 39 proteins were purified from SmD3 and Lsm complexes, respectively. Interestingly, among the proteins purified from Lsm3, no mRNA degradation factors were detected, as in Lsm complexes from other eukaryotes. The U1A complex was purified and mass spectrometry analysis identified, in addition to U1 small nuclear ribonucleoprotein (snRNP) proteins, additional co-purified proteins, including the polyadenylation factor CPSF73. Defects observed in cells silenced for U1 snRNP proteins suggest that the U1 snRNP functions exclusively in cis-splicing, although U1A also participates in polyadenylation and affects trans-splicing. The study characterized several trypanosome-specific nuclear factors involved in snRNP biogenesis, whose function was elucidated in Trypanosoma brucei. Conserved factors, such as PRP19, which functions at the heart of every cis-spliceosome, also affect SL RNA modification; GEMIN2, a protein associated with SMN (survival of motor neurons) and implicated in selective association of U snRNA with core Sm proteins in trypanosomes, is a master regulator of snRNP assembly. This study demonstrates the existence of trypanosomatid-specific splicing factors but also that conserved snRNP proteins possess trypanosome-specific functions.
Project description:During catalytic activation of the spliceosome, snRNP remodeling events occur, leading to the formation of a 35S U5 snRNP that contains a large group of proteins, including Prp19 and CDC5, not found in 20S U5 snRNPs. To investigate the function of 35S U5 proteins, we immunoaffinity purified human spliceosomes that had not yet undergone catalytic activation (designated BDeltaU1), which contained U2, U4, U5, and U6, but lacked U1 snRNA. Comparison of the protein compositions of BDeltaU1 and activated B* spliceosomes revealed that, whereas U4/U6 snRNP proteins are stably associated with BDeltaU1 spliceosomes, 35S U5-associated proteins (which are present in B*) are largely absent, suggesting that they are dispensable for complex B formation. Indeed, immunodepletion/complementation experiments demonstrated that a subset of 35S U5 proteins including Prp19, which form a stable heteromeric complex, are required prior to catalytic step 1 of splicing, but not for stable integration of U4/U6.U5 tri-snRNPs. Thus, comparison of the proteomes of spliceosomal complexes at defined stages can provide information as to which proteins function as a group at a particular step of splicing.
Project description:In trypanosomatid parasites, spliced leader (SL) trans splicing is an essential nuclear mRNA maturation step which caps mRNAs posttranscriptionally and, in conjunction with polyadenylation, resolves individual mRNAs from polycistronic precursors. While all trypanosomatid mRNAs are trans spliced, intron removal by cis splicing is extremely rare and predicted to occur in only four pre-mRNAs. trans- and cis-splicing reactions are carried out by the spliceosome, which consists of U-rich small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles (U snRNPs) and of non-snRNP factors. Mammalian and yeast spliceosome complexes are well characterized and found to be associated with up to 170 proteins. Despite the central importance of trans splicing in trypanosomatid gene expression, only the core RNP proteins and a few snRNP-specific proteins are known. To characterize the trypanosome spliceosomal protein repertoire, we conducted a proteomic analysis by tagging and tandem affinity-purifying the canonical core RNP protein SmD1 in Trypanosoma brucei and by identifying copurified proteins by mass spectrometry. The set of 47 identified proteins harbored nearly all spliceosomal snRNP factors characterized in trypanosomes thus far and 21 proteins lacking a specific annotation. A bioinformatic analysis combined with protein pull-down assays and immunofluorescence microscopy identified 10 divergent orthologues of known splicing factors, including the missing U1-specific protein U1A. In addition, a novel U5-specific, and, as we show, an essential splicing factor was identified that shares a short, highly conserved N-terminal domain with the yeast protein Cwc21p and was thus tentatively named U5-Cwc21. Together, these data strongly indicate that most of the identified proteins are components of the spliceosome.
Project description:The spliceosome is a complex machine composed of small nuclear ribonucleoproteins (snRNPs) and accessory proteins that excises introns from pre-mRNAs. After assembly the spliceosome is activated for catalysis by rearrangement of subunits to form an active site. How this rearrangement is coordinated is not well-understood. During activation, U4 must be released to allow U6 conformational change, while Prp19 complex (NTC) recruitment is essential for stabilizing the active site. We used multi-wavelength colocalization single molecule spectroscopy to directly observe the key events in Saccharomyces cerevisiae spliceosome activation. Following binding of the U4/U6.U5 tri-snRNP, the spliceosome either reverses assembly by discarding tri-snRNP or proceeds to activation by irreversible U4 loss. The major pathway for NTC recruitment occurs after U4 release. ATP stimulates both the competing U4 release and tri-snRNP discard processes. The data reveal the activation mechanism and show that overall splicing efficiency may be maintained through repeated rounds of disassembly and tri-snRNP reassociation.
Project description:The spliceosome is formed on pre-mRNA substrates from five small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles (U1, U2, U4/U6 and U5 snRNPs), and numerous non-snRNP factors. Saccharomyces cerevisiae U4/U6.U5 tri-snRNP comprises U5 snRNA, U4/U6 snRNA duplex and approximately 30 proteins and represents a substantial part of the spliceosome before activation. Schizosaccharomyces pombe U2.U6.U5 spliceosomal complex is a post-catalytic intron lariat spliceosome containing U2 and U5 snRNPs, NTC (nineteen complex), NTC-related proteins (NTR), U6 snRNA, and an RNA intron lariat. Two recent papers describe near-complete atomic structures of these complexes based on cryoEM single-particle analysis. The U4/U6.U5 tri-snRNP structure provides crucial insight into the activation mechanism of the spliceosome. The U2.U6.U5 complex reveals the striking architecture of NTC and NTR and important features of the group II intron-like catalytic RNA core remaining after spliced mRNA is released. These two structures greatly advance our understanding of the mechanism of pre-mRNA splicing.
Project description:The assembly pathway of spliceosomal snRNPs in yeast is poorly understood. We devised a screen to identify mutations blocking the assembly of newly synthesized U4 snRNA into a functional snRNP. Fifteen mutant strains failing either to accumulate the newly synthesized U4 snRNA or to assemble a U4/U6 particle were identified and categorized into 13 complementation groups. Thirteen previously identified splicing-defective prp mutants were also assayed for U4 snRNP assembly defects. Mutations in the U4/U6 snRNP components Prp3p, Prp4p, and Prp24p led to disassembly of the U4/U6 snRNP particle and degradation of the U6 snRNA, while prp17-1 and prp19-1 strains accumulated free U4 and U6 snRNA. A detailed analysis of a newly identified mutant, the sad1-1 mutant, is presented. In addition to having the snRNP assembly defect, the sad1-1 mutant is severely impaired in splicing at the restrictive temperature: the RP29 pre-mRNA strongly accumulates and splicing-dependent production of beta-galactosidase from reporter constructs is abolished, while extracts prepared from sad1-1 strains fail to splice pre-mRNA substrates in vitro. The sad1-1 mutant is the only splicing-defective mutant analyzed whose mutation preferentially affects assembly of newly synthesized U4 snRNA into the U4/U6 particle. SAD1 encodes a novel protein of 52 kDa which is essential for cell viability. Sad1p localizes to the nucleus and is not stably associated with any of the U snRNAs. Sad1p contains a putative zinc finger and is phylogenetically highly conserved, with homologues identified in human, Caenorhabditis elegans, Arabidospis, and Drosophila.
Project description:Intrinsically disordered proteins or protein regions play an important role in fundamental biological processes. During spliceosome activation, a large structural rearrangement occurs. The Prp19 complex and related factors are involved in the catalytic activation of the spliceosome. Recent mass spectrometric analyses have shown that Ski interaction protein (SKIP) and peptidylprolyl isomerase-like protein 1 (PPIL1) are Prp19-related factors that constitute the spliceosome B, B*, and C complexes. Here, we report that a highly flexible region of SKIP (SKIPN, residues 59-129) is intrinsically disordered. Upon binding to PPIL1, SKIPN undergoes a disorder-order transition. A highly conserved fragment of SKIP (residues 59-79) called the PPIL1-binding fragment (PBF) was sufficient to bind PPIL1. The structure of PBF.PPIL1 complex, solved by NMR, shows that PBF exhibits an ordered structure and interacts with PPIL1 through electrostatic and hydrophobic interactions. Three subfragments in the PBF (residues 59-67, 68-73, and 74-79) show hook-like backbone structure, and interactions between these subfragments are necessary for PBF.PPIL1 complex formation. PPIL1 is a cyclophilin family protein. It is recruited by SKIP into the spliceosome by a region other than the peptidylprolyl isomerase active site. This enables the active site of PPIL1 to remain open in the complex and still function as a peptidylprolyl cis/trans-isomerase or molecular chaperon to facilitate the folding of other proteins in the spliceosomes. The large disordered region in SKIP provides an interaction platform. Its disorder-order transition, induced by PPIL1 binding, may adapt the requirement for a large structural rearrangement occurred in the activation of spliceosome.
Project description:Protein complexes containing Prp19 play a central role during catalytic activation of the spliceosome, and Prp19 and its related proteins are major components of the spliceosome's catalytic core RNP. To learn more about the spatial organization of the human Prp19 (hPrp19)/CDC5L complex, which is comprised of hPrp19, CDC5L, PRL1, AD002, SPF27, CTNNBL1, and HSP73, we purified native hPrp19/CDC5L complexes from HeLa cells stably expressing FLAG-tagged AD002 or SPF27. Stoichiometric analyses indicated that, like Saccharomyces cerevisiae NTC (nineteen complex), the human Prp19/CDC5L complex contains four copies of hPrp19. Salt treatment identified a stable core comprised of CDC5L, hPrp19, PRL1, and SPF27. Protein-protein interaction studies revealed that SPF27 directly interacts with each component of the hPrp19/CDC5L complex core and also elucidated several additional, previously unknown interactions between hPrp19/CDC5L complex components. Limited proteolysis of the hPrp19/CDC5L complex revealed a protease-resistant complex comprised of SPF27, the C terminus of CDC5L, and the N termini of PRL1 and hPrp19. Under the electron microscope, purified hPrp19/CDC5L complexes exhibit an elongated, asymmetric shape with a maximum dimension of approximately 20 nm. Our findings not only elucidate the molecular organization of the hPrp19/CDC5L complex but also provide insights into potential protein-protein interactions at the core of the catalytically active spliceosome.
Project description:The Cajal body (CB) is a nuclear structure closely associated with import and biogenesis of small nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles (snRNPs). Here, we tested whether CBs also contain mature snRNPs and whether CB integrity depends on the ongoing snRNP splicing cycle. Sm proteins tagged with photoactivatable and color-maturing variants of fluorescent proteins were used to monitor snRNP behavior in living cells over time; mature snRNPs accumulated in CBs, traveled from one CB to another, and they were not preferentially replaced by newly imported snRNPs. To test whether CB integrity depends on the snRNP splicing cycle, two human orthologues of yeast proteins involved in distinct steps in spliceosome disassembly after splicing, hPrp22 and hNtr1, were depleted by small interfering RNA treatment. Surprisingly, depletion of either protein led to the accumulation of U4/U6 snRNPs in CBs, suggesting that reassembly of the U4/U6.U5 tri-snRNP was delayed. Accordingly, a relative decrease in U5 snRNPs compared with U4/U6 snRNPs was observed in CBs, as well as in nuclear extracts of treated cells. Together, the data show that particular phases of the spliceosome cycle are compartmentalized in living cells, with reassembly of the tri-snRNP occurring in CBs.