The nuclear gene product CBP1 stabilizes cytochrome b transcripts in yeast mitochondria. In cbp1 mutant strains, cytochrome b gene (cob) transcripts are not detectable by Northern blot analysis. The results of previous studies led to the hypothesis that CBP1 interacts with the 5′-untranslated sequence of the cob mRNA, or pre-mRNA, to stabilize the message. To determine what portion of the cob leader is sufficient for interaction with CBP1, we have investigated the stability of transcripts from a novel hybrid gene, cob-oli1, in which the 5′-terminal third of the cob leader sequence was fused to the coding sequence of the gene for ATP synthase subunit 9, oli1. The hybrid cob-oli1 transcript was stale in a strain wild-type at the CBP1 locus, but was undetectable in the cbp1 mutant background. That the cob-oli1 transcript was translated to produce ATP synthase subunit 9 in CBP1 strains containing the cob-oli1 gene was verified by 35S-methionine labeling of mitochondrial proteins. We conclude that the 5′-terminal portion of the cob message is sufficient for CBP1 function and discuss the hypothesis that CBP1 interacts directly with this region of the transcript to promote cob mRNA stability.
- RNA stability
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