BACKGROUND: The Arabidopsis ortholog of the 30 kD subunit of the mammalian Cleavage and Polyadenylation Specificity Factor (AtCPSF30) is an RNA-binding endonuclease that is associated with other Arabidopsis CPSF subunits (orthologs of the 160, 100, and 73 kD subunits of CPSF). In order to further explore the functions of AtCPSF30, the subcellular distribution of the protein was examined by over-expressing fusion proteins containing fluorescent reporters linked to different CPSF subunits.
RESULTS: It was found that AtCPSF30 by itself localizes, not to the nucleus, but to the cytoplasm. AtCPSF30 could be found in the nucleus when co-expressed with AtCPSF160 or AtCPSF73(I), one of the two Arabidopsis orthologs of CPSF73. This re-directing of AtCPSF30 indicates that AtCPSF30 is retained in the nucleus via interactions with either or both of these other CPSF subunits. Co-expression of AtCSPF30 with AtCPSF100 altered the location, not of AtCPSF30, but rather of AtCPSF100, with these proteins residing in the cytoplasm. Deletion of plant-specific N- or C-terminal domains of AtCPSF30 abolished various of the interactions between AtCPSF30 and other CPSF subunits, suggesting that the plant CPSF complex assembles via novel protein-protein interactions.
CONCLUSION: These results suggest that the nuclear CPSF complex in plants is a dynamic one, and that the interactions between AtCPSF30 and other CPSF subunits are different from those existing in other eukaryotes.
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