The EMBO journal

The DEXD/H-box RNA helicase RHII/Gu is a co-factor for c-Jun-activated transcription.

PMID 11823437


Tandem affinity purification (TAP) and mass spectrometric peptide sequencing showed that the DEAD-box RNA helicase RHII/Gu is a functional interaction partner of c-Jun in human cells. The N-terminal transcription activation region of, c-Jun interacts with a C-terminal domain of RHII/Gu. This interaction is stimulated by anisomycin treatment in a manner that is concurrent with, but independent of, c-Jun phosphorylation. A possible explanation for this effect is provided by the observation that RHII/Gu translocates from nucleolus to nucleoplasm upon anisomycin or UV treatment or when JNK signaling is activated by overexpression of a constitutively active form of MEKK1 kinase. Several experiments show that the RNA helicase activity of RHII/Gu supports c-Jun-mediated target gene activation: dominant-negative forms of RHII/Gu, as well as a neutralizing antibody against the enzyme, significantly interfered with c-Jun target gene activity but not with transcription in general. These findings clarify the mechanism of c-Jun-mediated transcriptional regulation, and provide evidence for an involvement of RHII/Gu in stress response and in RNA polymerase II-catalyzed transcription in mammalian cells.