Extra-ribosomal functions of Ribosomal Proteins
The general view of ribosomal proteins (RPs) is one of generic cellular proteins that function exclusively to maintain the integrity of the ribosome. In the last decade, however, there has been mounting evidence suggesting that RPs can also play specialized and regulatory roles that contribute to important cellular pathways. Yet, molecular mechanisms by which RPs carry out specific functions outside of the ribosomes have remained elusive.
We have recently discovered new auxiliary functions of RPs in both yeast and human cells. A major goal of our lab is to define new cellular mechanisms whereby RPs play specialized and regulatory roles that influence the basic functioning of eukaryotic cells. This knowledge will be relevant to the growing number of human disorders associated to mutations in RP genes, including malignant tumors and ribosomopathies, but for which the tissue-specific nature of these diseases is difficult to reconcile with the view that RPs play identical roles in every cell of the body.
Dionne, K. L., D. Bergeron, A. M. Landry-Voyer and F. Bachand (2019). “The 40S ribosomal protein uS5 (RPS2) assembles into an extra-ribosomal complex with human ZNF277 that competes with the PRMT3-uS5 interaction.” J Biol Chem 294: 1944-1955.
Landry-Voyer, A. M., S. Bilodeau, D. Bergeron, K. L. Dionne, S. A. Port, C. Rouleau, F. M. Boisvert, R. H. Kehlenbach and F. Bachand (2016). “Human PDCD2L Is an Export Substrate of CRM1 That Associates with 40S Ribosomal Subunit Precursors.” Mol Cell Biol 36: 3019-3032.
Lemieux, C., S. Marguerat, J. Lafontaine, N. Barbezier, J. Bahler and F. Bachand (2011). “A Pre-mRNA degradation pathway that selectively targets intron-containing genes requires the nuclear poly(A)-binding protein.” Mol Cell 44: 108-119.
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Recent studies indicate that transcription is pervasive in eukaryotes, producing a complex network of noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) that exist stably in cells or are rapidly degraded.