Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America

Arabidopsis protein arginine methyltransferase 3 is required for ribosome biogenesis by affecting precursor ribosomal RNA processing.

PMID 25352672


Ribosome biogenesis is a fundamental and tightly regulated cellular process, including synthesis, processing, and assembly of rRNAs with ribosomal proteins. Protein arginine methyltransferases (PRMTs) have been implicated in many important biological processes, such as ribosome biogenesis. Two alternative precursor rRNA (pre-rRNA) processing pathways coexist in yeast and mammals; however, how PRMT affects ribosome biogenesis remains largely unknown. Here we show that Arabidopsis PRMT3 (AtPRMT3) is required for ribosome biogenesis by affecting pre-rRNA processing. Disruption of AtPRMT3 results in pleiotropic developmental defects, imbalanced polyribosome profiles, and aberrant pre-rRNA processing. We further identify an alternative pre-rRNA processing pathway in Arabidopsis and demonstrate that AtPRMT3 is required for the balance of these two pathways to promote normal growth and development. Our work uncovers a previously unidentified function of PRMT in posttranscriptional regulation of rRNA, revealing an extra layer of complexity in the regulation of ribosome biogenesis.