A new mechanism in the formation of ribosomes has been discovered by researchers from the Heidelberg University Biochemistry Center. In an interdisciplinary approach, the Heidelberg scientists, along with colleagues from Switzerland and Japan, describe a heretofore uncharacterised protein that plays a specific role in ribosome assembly in eukaryotes, organisms whose cells contain a cell nucleus.
This protein makes sure that specific factors required for ribosome synthesis are transported together, like hitchhikers, into the nucleus to the site of assembly. The results of this research were published in “Science”.
Ribosomes, the protein factories of the cell, are macromolecular complexes of ribonucleic acids (RNA) and ribosomal proteins (r-proteins) that are organised in a highly complicated three-dimensional nanostructure. Correct synthesis of ribosomes is critical for the division of all cells and is a process that follows strict rules.
In eukaryotes, new ribosomes are formed predominantly in the cell nucleus. Therefore, the r-proteins needed for ribosome formation must travel from the cytoplasm of the cell to a site in the nucleus where the ribosomes are assembled. Until recently it was not clear whether r-proteins that have a similar function and form functional clusters on the ribosome structure are also co-transported into the nucleus.
The researchers have now found a protein that coordinates the co-transport of certain r-proteins in functional clusters into the cell nucleus. This factor is called Symportin1, for synchronised import. “Symportin1 synchronises the import of both the Rpl5 and Rpl11 r-proteins into the cell nucleus and supports their integration into the growing ribosome structure”, explains Prof. Dr. Irmgard Sinning of the Heidelberg University Biochemistry Center (BZH). “It employs a familiar logistical concept from every day life, like picking up a hitchhiker or sharing a taxi with someone headed for the same destination”, says Dr. Gert Bange of the BZH, lead author of the study together with Dr. Dieter Kressler (now of Fribourg University).
The researchers from Heidelberg University and the University of Fribourg (Switzerland) collaborated closely with colleagues from Osaka University in Japan on the research. “The combination of different methods ranging from traditional cell biology to new biophysical approaches was crucial in developing the detailed picture of this previously unknown biological mechanism”, emphasises Prof. Dr. Ed Hurt, also of the BZH. The study took advantage of the Biochemistry Center’s crystallisation platform and the research received support from the Cluster of Excellence “CellNetworks” of Heidelberg University.
Marietta Fuhrmann-Koch | idw
Researchers uncover protein-based “cancer signature”
05.12.2016 | Universität Basel
The Nagoya Protocol Creates Disadvantages for Many Countries when Applied to Microorganisms
05.12.2016 | Leibniz-Institut DSMZ-Deutsche Sammlung von Mikroorganismen und Zellkulturen GmbH
Have you ever wondered how you see the world? Vision is about photons of light, which are packets of energy, interacting with the atoms or molecules in what...
A multi-institutional research collaboration has created a novel approach for fabricating three-dimensional micro-optics through the shape-defined formation of porous silicon (PSi), with broad impacts in integrated optoelectronics, imaging, and photovoltaics.
Working with colleagues at Stanford and The Dow Chemical Company, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign fabricated 3-D birefringent...
In experiments with magnetic atoms conducted at extremely low temperatures, scientists have demonstrated a unique phase of matter: The atoms form a new type of quantum liquid or quantum droplet state. These so called quantum droplets may preserve their form in absence of external confinement because of quantum effects. The joint team of experimental physicists from Innsbruck and theoretical physicists from Hannover report on their findings in the journal Physical Review X.
“Our Quantum droplets are in the gas phase but they still drop like a rock,” explains experimental physicist Francesca Ferlaino when talking about the...
The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
The “MADMAX” project is the MPP’s commitment to axion research. Axions are so far only a theoretical prediction and are difficult to detect: on the one hand,...
Broadband rotational spectroscopy unravels structural reshaping of isolated molecules in the gas phase to accommodate water
In two recent publications in the Journal of Chemical Physics and in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters, researchers around Melanie Schnell from the Max...
16.11.2016 | Event News
01.11.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
05.12.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering
05.12.2016 | Materials Sciences
05.12.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering