The in vivo synthesis and assembly of human small nuclear ribonucleoproteins (snRNPs) have been studied using pulse/chase analysis. Antibodies derived from patients with systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) and mixed connective tissue disease (MCTD) recognize distinguishable subsets of pulse-labeled snRNP peptides. These antibodies were used to immunoprecipitate sucrose gradient fractionated pulse-labeled and pulse/chased snRNP proteins. The results indicate that assembly of the U RNA-containing snRNPs is a multistep process involving prior assembly of an RNA-free 6S core particle. This precursor contains snRNP peptides D, E, F, and G, which are common to all the different U RNA-containing particles. Furthermore, a posttranslational modification of one of the U1 snRNP-specific peptides has been observed, and the kinetics of this process indicates that the modification occurs after particle assembly. Functional and structural implications of a protein core for snRNP particles are discussed.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)