Molecular Biology

Molecular Genetics

nonstop decay

Researchers Discover New Mechanism That Targets And Destroys Abnormal RNA:Adapted: "Messenger RNA molecules are the genetic templates for proteins. In constructing proteins, the mRNA template is transcribed from DNA genes and transported to the ribosomes -- the cell's protein "factories" that are large complexes of protein and RNA. Given the importance of mRNA as an information-carrying molecule, the machinery that regulates mRNA levels and destroys faulty mRNA is critical in ensuring that errors in the genetic code are not passed on to proteins.

Nonstop decay is mRNA turnover mechanism that has none of the properties of nonsense-mediated decay (NMD), or of normal mRNA turnover in the cell. Nonstop decay shares none of the enzymes required for nonsense-mediated decay. A multi-enzyme complex called the exosome is important for nonstop decay, site of binding of a specific adapter protein called Ski7p occurs."

One percent of genes in both humans and yeast produce mRNAs containing specific sequences that would trigger degradation of the RNA by nonstop decay. Nonstop mRNA transcripts might be important in enabling production of shortened proteins that are needed at specific stages of development. At later stages of development, when these truncated proteins are no longer needed, their mRNA could easily be destroyed by nonstop decay."
The original news release can be found here.

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