The EMBO journal

Molecular mechanism of mRNA repression in trans by a ProQ-dependent small RNA.

PMID 28336682


Research into post-transcriptional control of mRNAs by small noncoding RNAs (sRNAs) in the model bacteria Escherichia coli and Salmonella enterica has mainly focused on sRNAs that associate with the RNA chaperone Hfq. However, the recent discovery of the protein ProQ as a common binding partner that stabilizes a distinct large class of structured sRNAs suggests that additional RNA regulons exist in these organisms. The cellular functions and molecular mechanisms of these new ProQ-dependent sRNAs are largely unknown. Here, we report in Salmonella Typhimurium the mode-of-action of RaiZ, a ProQ-dependent sRNA that is made from the 3' end of the mRNA encoding ribosome-inactivating protein RaiA. We show that RaiZ is a base-pairing sRNA that represses in trans the mRNA of histone-like protein HU-α. RaiZ forms an RNA duplex with the ribosome-binding site of hupA mRNA, facilitated by ProQ, to prevent 30S ribosome loading and protein synthesis of HU-α. Similarities and differences between ProQ- and Hfq-mediated regulation will be discussed.

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