RNA (New York, N.Y.)

The C-terminal region of Ge-1 presents conserved structural features required for P-body localization.

PMID 18755833


The removal of the 5' cap structure by the DCP1-DCP2 decapping complex irreversibly commits eukaryotic mRNAs to degradation. In human cells, the interaction between DCP1 and DCP2 is bridged by the Ge-1 protein. Ge-1 contains an N-terminal WD40-repeat domain connected by a low-complexity region to a conserved C-terminal domain. It was reported that the C-terminal domain interacts with DCP2 and mediates Ge-1 oligomerization and P-body localization. To understand the molecular basis for these functions, we determined the three-dimensional crystal structure of the most conserved region of the Drosophila melanogaster Ge-1 C-terminal domain. The region adopts an all alpha-helical fold related to ARM- and HEAT-repeat proteins. Using structure-based mutants we identified an invariant surface residue affecting P-body localization. The conservation of critical surface and structural residues suggests that the C-terminal region adopts a similar fold with conserved functions in all members of the Ge-1 protein family.