Small Nuclear Ribonucleoprotein Remodeling During Catalytic Activation of the Spliceosome

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Science  13 Dec 2002:
Vol. 298, Issue 5601, pp. 2205-2208
DOI: 10.1126/science.1077783

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Major structural changes occur in the spliceosome during its activation just before catalyzing the splicing of pre–messenger RNAs (pre-mRNAs). Whereas changes in small nuclear RNA (snRNA) conformation are well documented, little is known about remodeling of small nuclear ribonucleoprotein (snRNP) structures during spliceosome activation. Here, human 45S activated spliceosomes and a previously unknown 35S U5 snRNP were isolated by immunoaffinity selection and were characterized by mass spectrometry. Comparison of their protein components with those of other snRNP and spliceosomal complexes revealed a major change in protein composition during spliceosome activation. Our data also suggest that the U5 snRNP is dramatically remodeled at this stage, with the Prp19 complex and other factors tightly associating, possibly in exchange for other U5 proteins, and suggest that after catalysis the remodeled U5 is eventually released from the postsplicing complex as a 35S snRNP particle.

  • * To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: reinhard.luehrmann{at}

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