A viral protein suppresses RNA silencing and binds silencing-generated, 21- to 25-nucleotide double-stranded RNAs

D. Silhavy, Attila Molnár, Alessandra Lucioli, G. Szittya, Csaba Hornyik, Mario Tavazza, J. Burgyán

Research output: Article

439 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Posttranscriptional gene silencing (PTGS) processes double-stranded (ds) RNAs into 21-25 nucleotide (nt) RNA fragments that direct ribonucleases to target cognate mRNAs. In higher plants, PTGS also generates mobile signals conferring sequence-specific silencing in distant organs. Since PTGS acts as an antiviral system in plants, successful virus infection requires evasion or suppression of gene silencing. Here we report that the 19 kDa protein (p19) of tombusviruses is a potent silencing suppressor that prevents the spread of mobile silencing signal. In vitro, p19 binds PTGS-generated, 21-25 nt dsRNAs and 21-nt synthetic dsRNAs with 2-nt 3′ overhanging end(s), while it barely interacts with single-stranded (ss) RNAs, long dsRNAs or blunt-ended 21-nt dsRNAs. We propose that p19 mediates silencing suppression by sequestering the PTGS-generated 21-25 nt dsRNAs, thus depleting the specificity determinants of PTGS effector complexes. Moreover, the observation that pl9-expressing transgenic plants show altered leaf morphology might indicate that the p19-targeted PTGS pathway is also important in the regulation of plant development.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3070-3080
Number of pages11
JournalEMBO Journal
Volume21
Issue number12
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - jún. 17 2002

Fingerprint

Double-Stranded RNA
Viral Proteins
RNA Interference
Nucleotides
Genes
RNA
Tombusvirus
Plant Viruses
Plant Genes
Plant Development
Genetically Modified Plants
Gene Silencing
Virus Diseases
Ribonucleases
Protein Sorting Signals
Antiviral Agents
Viruses
Messenger RNA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Genetics
  • Cell Biology

Cite this

A viral protein suppresses RNA silencing and binds silencing-generated, 21- to 25-nucleotide double-stranded RNAs. / Silhavy, D.; Molnár, Attila; Lucioli, Alessandra; Szittya, G.; Hornyik, Csaba; Tavazza, Mario; Burgyán, J.

In: EMBO Journal, Vol. 21, No. 12, 17.06.2002, p. 3070-3080.

Research output: Article

Silhavy, D. ; Molnár, Attila ; Lucioli, Alessandra ; Szittya, G. ; Hornyik, Csaba ; Tavazza, Mario ; Burgyán, J. / A viral protein suppresses RNA silencing and binds silencing-generated, 21- to 25-nucleotide double-stranded RNAs. In: EMBO Journal. 2002 ; Vol. 21, No. 12. pp. 3070-3080.
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