Functional association of human Ki-1/57 with pre-mRNA splicing events


J. Kobarg, Laboratório Nacional de Luz Síncrotron, Centro de Biologia Molecular Estrutural, Rua Giuseppe Máximo Scolfaro 10.000, C.P. 6192, 13084-971 Campinas, SP, Brasil
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The cytoplasmic and nuclear protein Ki-1/57 was first identified in malignant cells from Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Despite studies showing its phosphorylation, arginine methylation, and interaction with several regulatory proteins, the functional role of Ki-1/57 in human cells remains to be determined. Here, we investigated the relationship of Ki-1/57 with RNA functions. Through immunoprecipitation assays, we verified the association of Ki-1/57 with the endogenous splicing proteins hnRNPQ and SFRS9 in HeLa cell extracts. We also found that recombinant Ki-1/57 was able to bind to a poly-U RNA probe in electrophoretic mobility shift assays. In a classic splicing test, we showed that Ki-1/57 can modify the splicing site selection of the adenoviral E1A minigene in a dose-dependent manner. Further confocal and fluorescence microscopy analysis revealed the localization of enhanced green fluorescent protein–Ki-1/57 to nuclear bodies involved in RNA processing and or small nuclear ribonucleoprotein assembly, depending on the cellular methylation status and its N-terminal region. In summary, our findings suggest that Ki-1/57 is probably involved in cellular events related to RNA functions, such as pre-mRNA splicing.

Structured digital abstract