Our big review on stable RNPs and the complexomic approaches to profile them , including Grad-seq, co-authored with the Jörg Vogel's lab, is availbale in Frontiers in Molecular Biosciences:
- Gerovac M, Vogel J, Smirnov A (2021) The world of stable ribonucleoproteins and its mapping with Grad-seq and related approaches. Front Mol Biosci 8:661448
Macromolecular complexes of proteins and RNAs are essential building blocks of cells. These stable supramolecular particles can be viewed as minimal biochemical units whose structural organization, i.e., the way the RNA and the protein interact with each other, is directly linked to their biological function. Whether those are dynamic regulatory ribonucleoproteins (RNPs) or integrated molecular machines involved in gene expression, the comprehensive knowledge of these units is critical to our understanding of key molecular mechanisms and cell physiology phenomena. Such is the goal of diverse complexomic approaches and in particular of the recently developed gradient profiling by sequencing (Grad-seq). By separating cellular protein and RNA complexes on a density gradient and quantifying their distributions genome-wide by mass spectrometry and deep sequencing, Grad-seq charts global landscapes of native macromolecular assemblies. In this review, we propose a function-based ontology of stable RNPs and discuss how Grad-seq and related approaches transformed our perspective of bacterial and eukaryotic ribonucleoproteins by guiding the discovery of new RNA-binding proteins and unusual classes of noncoding RNAs. We highlight some methodological aspects and developments that permit to further boost the power of this technique and to look for exciting new biology in understudied and challenging biological models.
Currently the only review about YbeY in existence - a great piece from Zhen & Cédric! Congratulations!
- Liao Z, Schelcher C, Smirnov A (2021) YbeY, éminence grise of ribosome biogenesis. Biochem Soc Trans 49:727-45
YbeY is an ultraconserved small protein belonging to the unique heritage shared by most existing bacteria and eukaryotic organelles of bacterial origin, mitochondria and chloroplasts. Studied in more than a dozen of evolutionarily distant species, YbeY is invariably critical for cellular physiology. However, the exact mechanisms by which it exerts such penetrating influence are not completely understood. In this review, we attempt a transversal analysis of the current knowledge about YbeY, based on genetic, structural, and biochemical data from a wide variety of models. We propose that YbeY, in association with the ribosomal protein uS11 and the assembly GTPase Era, plays a critical role in the biogenesis of the small ribosomal subunit, and more specifically its platform region, in diverse genetic systems of bacterial type.
A fantastic chapter relating the first-hand experience of using high-resolution microscopy methods to locate transcripts and proteins at a submitochondrial level - a fruit of a great collaboration with the Yves Mély's team!
- Smirnova A, Richert L, Smirnov A, Mély Y, Tarassov I (2021) Suborganellar localisation of mitochondrial proteins and transcripts in human cells. Methods Mol Biol 2277:157-73
Mitochondria have complex ultrastructure which includes continuous subcompartments, such as matrix, intermembrane space, and two membranes, as well as focal structures, such as nucleoids, RNA granules, and mitoribosomes. Comprehensive studies of the spatial distribution of proteins and RNAs inside the mitochondria are necessary to understand organellar gene expression processes and macromolecule targeting pathways. Here we give examples of distribution analysis of mitochondrial proteins and transcripts by conventional microscopy and the super-resolution technique 3D STORM. We provide detailed protocols and discuss limitations of immunolabeling of mitochondrial proteins and newly synthesized mitochondrial RNAs by bromouridine incorporation and single-molecule RNA FISH in hepatocarcinoma cells.
Another great chapter about using lipophilic conjugates to deliver RNAs into cells nad toward mitochondria without transfection reagents - a result of a long-standing collaboration with the Alya Venyaminova's group!
- Dovydenko I, Meschaninova M, Heckel AM, Tarassov I, Venyaminova A, Entelis N (2021) Lipophilic conjugates for carrier-free delivery of RNA importable into human mitochondria. Methods Mol Biol 2277:49-67
Defects in human mitochondrial genome can cause a wide range of clinical disorders that still do not have efficient therapies. The natural pathway of small noncoding RNA import can be exploited to address therapeutic RNAs into the mitochondria. To create an approach of carrier-free targeting of RNA into living human cells, we designed conjugates containing a cholesterol residue and developed the protocols of chemical synthesis of oligoribonucleotides conjugated with cholesterol residue through cleavable pH-triggered hydrazone bond. The biodegradable conjugates of importable RNA with cholesterol can be internalized by cells in a carrier-free manner; RNA can then be released in the late endosomes due to a change in pH and partially targeted into mitochondria. Here we provide detailed protocols for solid-phase and "in solution" chemical synthesis of oligoribonucleotides conjugated to a cholesterol residue through a hydrazone bond. We describe the optimization of the carrier-free cell transfection with these conjugated RNA molecules and methods for evaluating the cellular and mitochondrial uptake of lipophilic conjugates.