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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A staufen-like RNA-binding protein in translocation channels linking nurse cells to oocytes in Notonecta shows nucleotide-dependent attachment to microtubules.

In Drosophila melanogaster the staufen gene encodes an RNA-binding protein that is essential for the correct localization of certain nurse cell-derived transcripts in oocytes. Although the mechanism underlying mRNA localization is unknown, mRNA-staufen complexes have been shown to move in a microtubule-dependent manner, and it has been suggested that staufen associates with a motor protein which generates the movement. We have investigated this possibility using Notonecta glauca in which nurse cells also supply the oocytes with mRNA, but via greatly extended nutritive tubes comprised of large aggregates of parallel microtubules. Using a staufen peptide antibody and RNA probes we have identified a staufen-like protein, which specifically binds double-stranded RNA, in the nutritive tubes of Notonecta. We show that while the staufen-like protein does not co-purify with microtubules from ovaries using standard procedures it does so under conditions of motor-entrapment, specifically in the presence of AMP-PNP. We also show that the staufen-like protein is subsequently removed by ATP and GTP, but not ADP. Nucleotide-dependent binding to microtubules is typical of a motor-mediated interaction and the pattern of attachment and detachment of the staufen-like protein correlates with that of a kinesin protein within the ovaries. Our findings indicate that the staufen-like RNA-binding protein attaches to, and is transported along, Notonecta ovarian microtubules by a kinesin motor.[1]


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