Unusual base pairing during the decoding of a stop codon by the ribosome

Israel S. Fernández, Chyan Leong Ng, Ann C. Kelley, Guowei Wu, Yi Tao Yu, V. Ramakrishnan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

75 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

During normal translation, the binding of a release factor to one of the three stop codons (UGA, UAA or UAG) results in the termination of protein synthesis. However, modification of the initial uridine to a pseudouridine (Ψ) allows efficient recognition and read-through of these stop codons by a transfer RNA (tRNA), although it requires the formation of two normally forbidden purine-purine base pairs. Here we determined the crystal structure at 3.1 Å resolution of the 30S ribosomal subunit in complex with the anticodon stem loop of tRNA Ser bound to the ΨAG stop codon in the A site. The ΨA base pair at the first position is accompanied by the formation of purine-purine base pairs at the second and third positions of the codon, which show an unusual Watson-Crick/Hoogsteen geometry. The structure shows a previously unsuspected ability of the ribosomal decoding centre to accommodate non-canonical base pairs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)107-110
Number of pages4
JournalNature
Volume500
Issue number7460
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2013

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Terminator Codon
Ribosomes
Base Pairing
RNA, Transfer, Ser
Pseudouridine
Anticodon
Ribosome Subunits
Uridine
Transfer RNA
Codon
purine
Proteins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General

Cite this

Fernández, I. S., Ng, C. L., Kelley, A. C., Wu, G., Yu, Y. T., & Ramakrishnan, V. (2013). Unusual base pairing during the decoding of a stop codon by the ribosome. Nature, 500(7460), 107-110. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature12302

Unusual base pairing during the decoding of a stop codon by the ribosome. / Fernández, Israel S.; Ng, Chyan Leong; Kelley, Ann C.; Wu, Guowei; Yu, Yi Tao; Ramakrishnan, V.

In: Nature, Vol. 500, No. 7460, 2013, p. 107-110.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Fernández, IS, Ng, CL, Kelley, AC, Wu, G, Yu, YT & Ramakrishnan, V 2013, 'Unusual base pairing during the decoding of a stop codon by the ribosome', Nature, vol. 500, no. 7460, pp. 107-110. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature12302
Fernández IS, Ng CL, Kelley AC, Wu G, Yu YT, Ramakrishnan V. Unusual base pairing during the decoding of a stop codon by the ribosome. Nature. 2013;500(7460):107-110. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature12302
Fernández, Israel S. ; Ng, Chyan Leong ; Kelley, Ann C. ; Wu, Guowei ; Yu, Yi Tao ; Ramakrishnan, V. / Unusual base pairing during the decoding of a stop codon by the ribosome. In: Nature. 2013 ; Vol. 500, No. 7460. pp. 107-110.
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