NTF2-like domain of Tap plays a critical role in cargo mRNA recognition and export
Authors: Katahira J, Dimitrova L, Imai Y, Hurt E
CellNetworks People: Hurt Ed
Journal: Nucleic Acids Res. 2015 Feb 18;43(3):1894-904. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkv039

Metazoan Tap-p15 (also called Nxf1-Nxt1) and yeast Mex67-Mtr2 heterodimers are the general mRNA export receptors. The RNA binding activity of Tap-p15, which is essential for mRNA nuclear export, has been attributed to the amino-terminal RNA binding module of Tap consists of RNA recognition motif (RRM) and leucine-rich repeat. In this study, we identified a novel RNA interaction surface in the NTF2-like (NTF2L) domain of Tap, which is analogous to the rRNA binding platform of Mex67-Mtr2. Tap-p15 uses the three domains to tightly bind the retroviral constitutive transport element. The RNA binding through the NTF2L domain is functionally relevant as introduction of mutations in this region reduced CTE-containing mRNA export activity. In contrast, only when the RRM and NTF2L domains were mutated simultaneously, bulk poly (A)(+) RNA export and in vivo poly (A)(+) RNA binding activities of Tap-p15 were significantly attenuated. Moreover, an engineered human cell line harboring the NTF2L domain mutation in the NXF1 gene showed a synthetic growth phenotype and severe mRNA export defect under Aly/REF and Thoc5 depleted condition. These data suggest that Tap-p15 recognizes bulk mRNAs through combinatorial use of the distinct RNA binding domains.