U12-type or minor introns are found in most multicellular eukaryotes and constitute ∼0.5% of all introns in species with a minor spliceosome. Although the biological significance for the evolutionary conservation of U12-type introns is debated, mutations disrupting U12 splicing cause developmental defects in both plants and animals. In human hematopoietic stem cells, U12 splicing defects disrupt proper differentiation of myeloid lineages and are associated with myelodysplastic syndrome, predisposing individuals to acute myeloid leukemia. Mutants in the maize ortholog of RNA binding motif protein 48 (RBM48) have aberrant U12-type intron splicing. Human RBM48 was recently purified biochemically as part of the minor spliceosome and shown to recognize the 5′ end of the U6atac snRNA. In this report, we use CRISPR/Cas9-mediated ablation of RBM48 in human K-562 cells to show the genetic function of RBM48. RNA-seq analysis comparing wild-type and mutant K-562 genotypes found that 48% of minor intron-containing genes have significant U12-type intron retention in RBM48 mutants. Comparing these results to maize rbm48 mutants defined a subset of minor intron-containing genes disrupted in both species. Mutations in the majority of these orthologous minor intron-containing genes have been reported to cause developmental defects in both plants and animals. Our results provide more »
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Abstract Plant disease resistance is a complex process that is maintained in an intricate balance with development. Increasing evidence indicates the importance of posttranscriptional regulation of plant defense by RNA binding proteins. In a genetic screen for suppressors of Arabidopsis (Arabidopsis thaliana) accelerated cell death 6-1 (acd6-1), a small constitutive defense mutant whose defense level is grossly in a reverse proportion to plant size, we identified an allele of the canonical flowering regulatory gene FLOWERING LOCUS K HOMOLOGY DOMAIN (FLK) encoding a putative protein with triple K homology (KH) repeats. The KH repeat is an ancient RNA binding motif found in proteins from diverse organisms. The relevance of KH-domain proteins in pathogen resistance is largely unexplored. In addition to late flowering, the flk mutants exhibited decreased resistance to the bacterial pathogen Pseudomonas syringae and increased resistance to the necrotrophic fungal pathogen Botrytis cinerea. We further found that the flk mutations compromised basal defense and defense signaling mediated by salicylic acid (SA). Mutant analysis revealed complex genetic interactions between FLK and several major SA pathway genes. RNA-seq data showed that FLK regulates expression abundance of some major defense- and development-related genes as well as alternative splicing of a number of genes.more »
Centriole duplication occurs once in each cell cycle to maintain centrosome number. A previous genome-wide screen revealed that depletion of 14 RNA splicing factors leads to a specific defect in centriole duplication, but the cause of this deficit remains unknown. Here, we identified an additional pre-mRNA splicing factor, WBP11, as a novel protein required for centriole duplication. Loss of WBP11 results in the retention of ∼200 introns, including multiple introns in TUBGCP6, a central component of the γ-TuRC. WBP11 depletion causes centriole duplication defects, in part by causing a rapid decline in the level of TUBGCP6. Several additional splicing factors that are required for centriole duplication interact with WBP11 and are required for TUBGCP6 expression. These findings provide insight into how the loss of a subset of splicing factors leads to a failure of centriole duplication. This may have clinical implications because mutations in some spliceosome proteins cause microcephaly and/or growth retardation, phenotypes that are strongly linked to centriole defects.
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We recently performed transcriptome and proteome profiling of human lung epithelial cells ectopically expressing oncogenic KRAS and another cancer-associated Ras GTPase, RIT1. Unbiased analysis of phosphoproteome data identified altered splicing factor phosphorylation in KRAS-mutant cells, so we performed differential alternative splicing analysis using rMATS to identify significantly altered isoforms in lung epithelial cells. To determine whether these isoforms were uniquely regulated by KRAS, we performed a large-scale splicing screen in which we generated over 300 unique RNA sequencing profiles of isogenic A549 lung adenocarcinoma cells ectopically expressing 75 different wild-type or variant alleles across 28 genes implicated in lung cancer.
Mass spectrometry data showed widespread downregulation of splicing factor phosphorylation in lung epithelial cells expressing mutant KRAS compared to cells expressing wild-type KRAS. We observed alternative splicing in the same cells, with 2196 and 2416more »
Proteomic and transcriptomic profiling of lung epithelial cells uncovered splicing factor phosphorylation and mRNA splicing events regulated by oncogenic KRAS. These data suggest that in addition to widespread transcriptional changes, the Ras signaling pathway can promote post-transcriptional splicing changes that may contribute to oncogenic processes.
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