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

Occurrence of unmodified adenine and uracil at the first position of anticodon in threonine tRNAs in Mycoplasma capricolum.

Codon usage pattern in the threonine four-codon (ACN) box in Mycoplasma capricolum is strongly biased towards adenine and uracil for the third base of codons. Codons ending in uracil or adenine, especially ACU, predominate over ACC and ACG. This bacterium contains two isoacceptor threonine tRNAs having anticodon sequences AGU and UGU, both with unmodified first nucleotides. It would thus appear that ACN codons are translated in an unusual way; tRNA(Thr)(AGU) would translate the most abundantly used codon ACU exclusively, because adenine at the first anticodon position can, according to the wobble rule, pair only with uracil of the third codon position. The tRNA(Thr)(UGU) would mainly be responsible for translation of three other codons, ACA, ACG, and ACC. Anticodon UGU would also be used for reading codon ACU as a redundancy of tRNA(Thr)-(AGU), as deduced from the mitochondrial code where unmodified uracil at the first anticodon position can pair with adenine, cytosine, guanine, and uracil by four-way wobble. The tRNA(Thr)(AGU) has much higher sequence homology to tRNA(Thr)(UGU) from M. capricolum (88%), Bacillus subtilis (77%) and Escherichia coli (86%) than to tRNA(Thr)(GGU) from B. subtilis (66%) and E. coli (63%), suggesting that tRNA(Thr)-(AGU) has been derived from tRNA(Thr)(UGU), but not from tRNA(Thr)(GGU).[1]


  1. Occurrence of unmodified adenine and uracil at the first position of anticodon in threonine tRNAs in Mycoplasma capricolum. Andachi, Y., Yamao, F., Iwami, M., Muto, A., Osawa, S. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. (1987) [Pubmed]
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