A trinucleotide can promote metal ion-dependent specific cleavage of RNA

Sergei Kazakov, Sidney Altman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

60 Scopus citations


Nucleotide sequence and metal ion requirements for Mn2+-dependent self-cleavage of an RNA 31 nucleotides long [Dange, V., Van Atta, R. B. & Hecht, S. M. (1990) Science 248, 585-588] were examined by analysis of the site-specific cleavage activity of substitution and deletion mutants as well as complexes assembled from fragments of this RNA. A complex of UUU and GAAACp allows specific cleavage between G and A at 37°C and pH 7.5. Additional nucleotides flanking the oligonucleotides in the minimal complex are not necessary for the cleavage reaction to take place but can affect the rate of the reaction. The 2′-OH groups of uridine residues do not participate in catalysis since both poly(U) and poly(dU) can promote the specific cleavage reaction in trans. Cd2+ ions can also promote the specific cleavage reaction and Mg2+ ions (which are inactive alone), under certain conditions, can enhance the Mn2+-induced cleavage of RNA.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7940-7943
Number of pages4
JournalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America
Issue number17
StatePublished - 1992
Externally publishedYes


  • Metal ion catalysis
  • Self-cleavage of RNA

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


Dive into the research topics of 'A trinucleotide can promote metal ion-dependent specific cleavage of RNA'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this