general mechanism
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2022 ◽  
Vol 119 (3) ◽  
pp. e2025575119
Paolo Rissone ◽  
Cristiano V. Bizarro ◽  
Felix Ritort

Accurate knowledge of RNA hybridization is essential for understanding RNA structure and function. Here we mechanically unzip and rezip a 2-kbp RNA hairpin and derive the 10 nearest-neighbor base pair (NNBP) RNA free energies in sodium and magnesium with 0.1 kcal/mol precision using optical tweezers. Notably, force–distance curves (FDCs) exhibit strong irreversible effects with hysteresis and several intermediates, precluding the extraction of the NNBP energies with currently available methods. The combination of a suitable RNA synthesis with a tailored pulling protocol allowed us to obtain the fully reversible FDCs necessary to derive the NNBP energies. We demonstrate the equivalence of sodium and magnesium free-energy salt corrections at the level of individual NNBP. To characterize the irreversibility of the unzipping–rezipping process, we introduce a barrier energy landscape of the stem–loop structures forming along the complementary strands, which compete against the formation of the native hairpin. This landscape correlates with the hysteresis observed along the FDCs. RNA sequence analysis shows that base stacking and base pairing stabilize the stem–loops that kinetically trap the long-lived intermediates observed in the FDC. Stem–loops formation appears as a general mechanism to explain a wide range of behaviors observed in RNA folding.

Rice ◽  
2022 ◽  
Vol 15 (1) ◽  
Lei Liu ◽  
Ying Zhou ◽  
Feng Mao ◽  
Yujuan Gu ◽  
Ziwei Tang ◽  

AbstractGrain size is subtly regulated by multiple signaling pathways in rice. Alternative splicing is a general mechanism that regulates gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. However, to our knowledge, the molecular mechanism underlying grain size regulation by alternative splicing is largely unknown. GS3, the first identified QTL for grain size in rice, is regulated at the transcriptional and post-translational level. In this study, we identified that GS3 is subject to alternative splicing. GS3.1 and GS3.2, two dominant isoforms, accounts for about 50% and 40% of total transcripts, respectively. GS3.1 encodes the full-length protein, while GS3.2 generated a truncated proteins only containing OSR domain due to a 14 bp intronic sequence retention. Genetic analysis revealed that GS3.1 overexpressors decreased grain size, but GS3.2 showed no significant effect on grain size. Furthermore, we demonstrated that GS3.2 disrupts GS3.1 signaling by competitive occupation of RGB1. Therefore, we draw a conclusion that the alternative splicing of GS3 decreases the amount of GS3.1 and GS3.2 disrupts the GS3.1 signaling to inhibit the negative effects of GS3.1 to fine-tune grain size. Moreover, the mechanism is conserved in cereals rather than in Cruciferae, which is associated with its effects on grain size. The results provide a novel, conserved and important mechanism underlying grain size regulation at the post-transcriptional level in cereals.

Carmela Ferri ◽  
Anna Di Biase ◽  
Marco Bocchetti ◽  
Silvia Zappavigna ◽  
Sarah Wagner ◽  

Abstract Background The long non-coding RNA (lncRNA), MALAT1, plays a key role in the development of different cancers, and its expression is associated with worse prognosis in patients. However, its mechanism of action and its regulation are not well known in prostate cancer (PCa). A general mechanism of action of lncRNAs is their interaction with other epigenetic regulators including microRNAs (miRNAs). Methods Using lentiviral stable miRNA transfection together with cell biology functional assays and gene expression/target analysis, we investigated the interaction between MALAT1 and miR-423-5p, defined as a target with in silico prediction analysis, in PCa. Results Through bioinformatic analysis of data available from TCGA, we have found that MALAT1 expression correlates with high Gleason grade, metastasis occurrence, and reduced survival in PCa patients. These findings were validated on a TMA of PCa showing a significant correlation between MALAT1 expression with both stage and grading. We report that, in PCa cells, MALAT1 expression and activity is regulated by miR-423-5p that binds MALAT1, downregulates its expression and inhibits its activity in promoting proliferation, migration, and invasion. Using NanoString analysis, we unraveled downstream cell pathways that were affected by miR-423-5p expression and MALAT1 downregulation and identified several alterations in genes that are involved in metastatic response and angiogenic pathways. In addition, we showed that the overexpression of miR-423-5p increases survival and decreases metastases formation in a xenograft mouse model. Conclusions We provide evidence on the role of MALAT1 in PCa tumorigenesis and progression. Also, we identify a direct interaction between miR-423-5p and MALAT1, which results in the suppression of MALAT1 action in PCa.

2022 ◽  
Vol 13 (1) ◽  
Ziming Wang ◽  
Andy Berbille ◽  
Yawei Feng ◽  
Site Li ◽  
Laipan Zhu ◽  

AbstractMechanochemistry has been studied for some time, but research on the reactivity of charges exchanged by contact-electrification (CE) during mechanical stimulation remains scarce. Here, we demonstrate that electrons transferred during the CE between pristine dielectric powders and water can be utilized to directly catalyze reactions without the use of conventional catalysts. Specifically, frequent CE at Fluorinated Ethylene Propylene (FEP) - water interface induces electron-exchanges, thus forming reactive oxygen species for the degradation of an aqueous methyl orange solution. Contact-electro-catalysis, by conjunction of CE, mechanochemistry and catalysis, has been proposed as a general mechanism, which has been demonstrated to be effective for various dielectric materials, such as Teflon, Nylon-6,6 and rubber. This original catalytic principle not only expands the range of catalytic materials, but also enables us to envisage catalytic processes through mechano-induced contact-electrification.

2022 ◽  
Ty A Bottorff ◽  
Adam P Geballe ◽  
Arvind Rasi Subramaniam

Upstream open reading frames (uORFs) are present in over half of all human mRNAs. uORFs can potently regulate the translation of downstream open reading frames by several mechanisms: siphoning away scanning ribosomes, regulating re-initiation, and allowing interactions between scanning and elongating ribosomes. However, the consequences of these different mechanisms for the regulation of protein expression remain incompletely understood. Here, we performed systematic measurements on the uORF-containing 5′ UTR of the cytomegaloviral UL4 mRNA to test alternative models of uORF-mediated regulation in human cells. We find that a terminal diproline-dependent elongating ribosome stall in the UL4 uORF prevents decreases in main ORF translation when ribosome loading onto the mRNA is reduced. This uORF-mediated buffering is insensitive to the location of the ribosome stall along the uORF. Computational kinetic modeling based on our measurements suggests that scanning ribosomes dissociate rather than queue when they collide with stalled elongating ribosomes within the UL4 uORF. We identify several human uORFs that repress main ORF translation via a similar terminal diproline motif. We propose that ribosome stalls in uORFs provide a general mechanism for buffering against reductions in main ORF translation during stress and developmental transitions.

2022 ◽  
Vol 119 (1) ◽  
pp. e2107763119
Lena Harker-Kirschneck ◽  
Anne E. Hafner ◽  
Tina Yao ◽  
Christian Vanhille-Campos ◽  
Xiuyun Jiang ◽  

Living systems propagate by undergoing rounds of cell growth and division. Cell division is at heart a physical process that requires mechanical forces, usually exerted by assemblies of cytoskeletal polymers. Here we developed a physical model for the ESCRT-III–mediated division of archaeal cells, which despite their structural simplicity share machinery and evolutionary origins with eukaryotes. By comparing the dynamics of simulations with data collected from live cell imaging experiments, we propose that this branch of life uses a previously unidentified division mechanism. Active changes in the curvature of elastic cytoskeletal filaments can lead to filament perversions and supercoiling, to drive ring constriction and deform the overlying membrane. Abscission is then completed following filament disassembly. The model was also used to explore how different adenosine triphosphate (ATP)-driven processes that govern the way the structure of the filament is changed likely impact the robustness and symmetry of the resulting division. Comparisons between midcell constriction dynamics in simulations and experiments reveal a good agreement with the process when changes in curvature are implemented at random positions along the filament, supporting this as a possible mechanism of ESCRT-III–dependent division in this system. Beyond archaea, this study pinpoints a general mechanism of cytokinesis based on dynamic coupling between a coiling filament and the membrane.

2022 ◽  
Alena Salašová ◽  
Niels Sanderhoff Degn ◽  
Mikhail Paveliev ◽  
Niels Kjærgaard Madsen ◽  
Saray López Benito ◽  

Abstract Background: Huntington’s disease (HD) is a fatal neurodegenerative disorder characterized by progressive motor dysfunction and loss of medium spiny neurons (MSNs) in dorsal striatum. Brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) sustains functionality and integrity of MSNs, and thus reduced BDNF signaling is integral to the disease. Mutations in BDNF receptor SorCS2 were recently identified in HD patients. Our study investigates the role of SorCS2 in MSNs biology and in HD progression. Methods: We derived a double transgenic line by crossbreeding SorCS2 deficient (KO) mice with the HD mouse model R6/1. Subsequently, we characterized the SorCS2 KO; R6/1 line by a set of behavioral and biochemical studies to evaluate phenotypes related to HD. Moreover, in combination with electrophysiology and super resolution microscopy techniques, we addressed the molecular mechanism by which SorCS2 controls synaptic activity in MSNs neurons. Results: We show that SorCS2 is expressed in MSNs with reduced levels in R6/1 HD model, and that SorCS2 deficiency exacerbates the disease progression in R6/1 mice. Furthermore, we find that SorCS2 binds TrkB and the NMDA receptor subunit GluN2B, which is required to control neurotransmission in corticostriatal synapses. While BDNF stimulates SorCS2-TrkB complex formation to enable TrkB signaling, it disengages SorCS2 from GluN2B, leading to enrichment of the subunit at postsynaptic densities. Consequently, long-term potentiation (LTP) is abolished in SorCS2 deficient mice, despite increased striatal TrkB and unaltered BDNF expression. However, the addition of exogenous BDNF rescues the phenotype. Finally, GluN2B, but not GluN2A, currents are also severely impaired in the SorCS2 KO mice. Conclusions: We formulate a novel molecular mechanism by which SorCS2 acts as a molecular switch. SorCS2 targets TrkB and GluN2B into postsynaptic densities to enable BDNF signaling and NMDAR dependent neurotransmission in the dorsal striatum. Remarkably, the binding between SorCS2 and TrkB or GluN2B, respectively, is mutually exclusive and controlled by BDNF. This mechanism provides an explanation why deficient SorCS2 signaling severely aggravates HD progression in mice. Moreover, we provide evidence that this finding might represent a general mechanism of SorCS2 signaling found in other brain areas, thus increasing its relevance for other neurological and psychiatric impairments.

2021 ◽  
Alexandra Pyatnitskaya ◽  
Jessica Andreani ◽  
Raphaël Guérois ◽  
Arnaud De Muyt ◽  
Valérie Borde

Meiotic recombination is triggered by programmed double-strand breaks (DSBs), a subset of these being repaired as crossovers, promoted by eight evolutionarily conserved proteins, named ZMM. Crossover formation is functionally linked to synaptonemal complex (SC) assembly between homologous chromosomes, but the underlying mechanism is unknown. Here we show that Ecm11, a SC central element protein, localizes on both DSB sites and sites that attach chromatin loops to the chromosome axis, which are the starting points of SC formation, in a way that strictly requires the ZMM protein Zip4. Furthermore, Zip4 directly interacts with Ecm11, and point mutants that specifically abolish this interaction lose Ecm11 binding to chromosomes and exhibit defective SC assembly. This can be partially rescued by artificially tethering interaction-defective Ecm11 to Zip4. Mechanistically, this direct connection ensuring SC assembly from CO sites could be a way for the meiotic cell to shut down further DSB formation once enough recombination sites have been selected for crossovers, thereby preventing excess crossovers. Finally, the mammalian ortholog of Zip4, TEX11, also interacts with the SC central element TEX12, suggesting a general mechanism.

2021 ◽  
Vol 17 (12) ◽  
pp. e1010112
Jodie A. Schiffer ◽  
Stephanie V. Stumbur ◽  
Maedeh Seyedolmohadesin ◽  
Yuyan Xu ◽  
William T. Serkin ◽  

Hydrogen peroxide (H2O2) is the most common chemical threat that organisms face. Here, we show that H2O2 alters the bacterial food preference of Caenorhabditis elegans, enabling the nematodes to find a safe environment with food. H2O2 induces the nematodes to leave food patches of laboratory and microbiome bacteria when those bacterial communities have insufficient H2O2-degrading capacity. The nematode’s behavior is directed by H2O2-sensing neurons that promote escape from H2O2 and by bacteria-sensing neurons that promote attraction to bacteria. However, the input for H2O2-sensing neurons is removed by bacterial H2O2-degrading enzymes and the bacteria-sensing neurons’ perception of bacteria is prevented by H2O2. The resulting cross-attenuation provides a general mechanism that ensures the nematode’s behavior is faithful to the lethal threat of hydrogen peroxide, increasing the nematode’s chances of finding a niche that provides both food and protection from hydrogen peroxide.

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