News FocusCell Biology

New Clue to How the Cell Controls Its Proteins

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Science  04 May 2001:
Vol. 292, Issue 5518, pp. 838-839
DOI: 10.1126/science.292.5518.838

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A possible new role for a hitherto mysterious eight-protein complex known as the COP9 signalosome (CSN) may help explain its function plus that of a recently discovered process called "neddylation," in which proteins are regulated by the addition or removal of a protein tag called NEDD8. Two papers published online today by Science ( indicate that CSN plays a key regulatory role in neddylation, at least in some cases turning down a protein by fostering its degradation. Because CSN contains eight subunits, cell biologists believe that it may have other biochemical activities as well that have yet to be discovered.