Molecular Biology

Signaling a Switch in Splicing

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Science  28 Apr 2000:
Vol. 288, Issue 5466, pp. 577
DOI: 10.1126/science.288.5466.577e

Alternative splicing generates messenger RNAs containing different combinations of coding sequences, which, when translated, yield a corresponding family of protein variants. One mechanism determining splice site selection is the balance between two sets of RNA-binding proteins, heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoproteins (hnRNPs) and serine-arginine (SR) proteins, where a relative excess of hnRNP A1 leads to predominant use of the distal 5' splice site. Now, van der Houven van Oordt et al. link activation of the p38 protein kinase signaling cascade, which is triggered by stress, to a redistribution of hnRNP A1 from the nucleus to the cytoplasm, thus switching the splicing of a transfected reporter gene towards the proximal 5' site.—GJC

J. Cell Biol.149, 307 (2000).

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