Structure of RDE-4 dsRBDs and mutational studies provide insights into dsRNA recognition in the Caenorhabditis elegans RNAi pathway.Chiliveri, S.C., Deshmukh, M.V.
(2014) Biochem J 458: 119-130
- PubMed: 24256178
- DOI: https://doi.org/10.1042/BJ20131347
- Primary Citation of Related Structures:
- PubMed Abstract:
The association of RDE-4 (RNAi defective 4), a protein containing two dsRBDs (dsRNA-binding domains), with long dsRNA and Dcr-1 (Dicer1 homologue) initiates the siRNA pathway in Caenorhabditis elegans. Unlike its homologues in higher eukaryotes, RDE-4 dsRBDs possess weak (micromolar) affinity for short dsRNA. With increasing length of dsRNA, RDE-4 exhibits enhanced affinity due to co-operativity. The linker and dsRBD2 are indispensable for RDE-4's simultaneous interaction with dsRNA and Dcr-1. In the present study, we have determined the solution structures of RDE-4 constructs that contain both dsRBDs and the linker region. In addition to the canonical dsRBD fold, both dsRBDs of RDE-4 show modified structural features such as truncation in the β1-β2 loop that rationalize RDE-4's relatively weak dsRNA affinity. Structure and binding studies demonstrate that dsRBD2 plays a decisive role in the RDE-4-dsRNA interaction; however, in contrast with previous findings, we found ephemeral interaction of RDE-4 dsRBD1 with dsRNA. More importantly, mutations in two tandem lysine residues (Lys217 and Lys218) in dsRBD2 impair RDE-4's dsRNA-binding ability and could obliterate RNAi initiation in C. elegans. Additionally, we postulate a structural basis for the minimal requirement of linker and dsRBD2 for RDE-4's association with dsRNA and Dcr-1.
*CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, Council of Scientific and Industrial Research, Uppal Road, Hyderabad 500007, India.