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Intron creation and polyadenylation in maize are directed by AU-rich RNA


, : Intron creation and polyadenylation in maize are directed by AU-rich RNA. Genes & Development 8(9): 1117-1130

Intron recognition in Angiosperms is hypothesized to require AU-rich motifs within introns. In this report we examined the role of AU-rich motifs in pre-mRNA processing. AU-rich segments of maize introns inserted near the single intron of the maize Bronze-2 (Bz2) gene result in alternative splicing. Other insertions of AU-rich sequence in the Bz2 cDNA resulted in de novo intron creation using splice junctions at the edges of the AU-rich region. Surprisingly, the five AU-rich inserts that we tested also caused polyadenyation, even though none had been selected for that function in plants. Insertions of GC-rich sequence into Bz2 did not cause either splicing or polyadenylation. We propose that AU-rich motifs are a general signal for RNA processing in maize and that in the absence of a 5' splice site, polyadenylation is the default pathway.

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Accession: 002416531

PMID: 7926791

DOI: 10.1101/gad.8.9.1117

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