Cell Biology

Pulling into a Rest Stop

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Science  13 Jan 2006:
Vol. 311, Issue 5758, pp. 147
DOI: 10.1126/science.311.5758.147c

The recent explosion of research on the interaction of small RNAs with messenger RNAs (mRNAs), which can lead either to cleavage of the double-stranded RNA complex or to translational repression, has intersected with studies of the life cycles of mRNAs, which in some cases spend part of their time in cytoplasmic processing bodies in a translationally dormant state, before degradation or reactivation. Beliakova-Bethell et al. have observed that the protein and RNA components of the yeast retrovirus-like element Ty3 congregate in cytoplasmic foci that also contain nascent virus-like particles. These sites turn out to be a way station for other proteins already shown to reside in processing bodies, among them Dhh1, a helicase that is involved in translational represssion and is required for Ty3 retrotransposition. Hence it appears that the demands of assembling proteins onto an RNA genome may be facilitated by the translational stasis imposed within processing bodies. — GJC

RNA 12, 94 (2006).

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