Synthesis of helix 69 of Escherichia coli 23S rRNA containing its natural modified nucleosides, m(3)Psi and Psi

J Org Chem. 2002 Dec 13;67(25):8847-54. doi: 10.1021/jo026364m.


The synthesis of 3-methylpseudouridine (m(3)Psi) phosphoramidite, 5'-O-[benzhydryloxybis(trimethylsilyloxy)silyl]-2'-O-[bis(2-acetoxyethoxy)methyl]-3-methylpseudouridine-3'-(methyl-N,N-diisopropyl)phosphoramidite, is reported. Selective pivaloyloxymethyl protection of the Psi N1 followed by methylation at N3 was used to generate the naturally occurring pseudouridine analogue. The m(3)Psi phosphoramidite was used in combination with pseudouridine (Psi) and standard base phosphoramidites to synthesize a 19-nucleotide RNA representing helix 69 of Escherichia coli 23S ribosomal RNA (rRNA) (residues 1906-1924), containing a single m(3)Psi at position 1915 and two Psi's at positions 1911 and 1917. Our synthesis of the fully modified helix 69 RNA demonstrates the ability to make milligram quantities of RNA that can be used for further high-resolution structure studies. Site-selective introduction of the methyl group at the N3 position of pseudouridine at position 1915 causes a slight increase in the thermodynamic stability of the RNA hairpin relative to pseudouridine; RNAs containing either uridine or 3-methyluridine at position 1915 have similar stability. One-dimensional imino proton NMR and circular dichroism spectra of the modified RNAs reveal that the methyl group does not cause any substantial changes in the RNA hairpin structure.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Circular Dichroism
  • Escherichia coli*
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Methylation
  • Molecular Structure
  • Nucleic Acid Conformation
  • Nucleosides / chemistry*
  • Oligoribonucleotides / chemical synthesis
  • Oligoribonucleotides / chemistry
  • Organosilicon Compounds / chemical synthesis*
  • Organosilicon Compounds / chemistry
  • Pseudouridine* / analogs & derivatives
  • Pseudouridine* / analysis
  • Pseudouridine* / chemical synthesis
  • Pseudouridine* / chemistry
  • RNA, Bacterial / chemical synthesis*
  • RNA, Bacterial / chemistry*
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 23S* / analysis
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 23S* / chemical synthesis
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 23S* / chemistry
  • Structure-Activity Relationship
  • Thermodynamics


  • Nucleosides
  • Oligoribonucleotides
  • Organosilicon Compounds
  • RNA, Bacterial
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 23S
  • Pseudouridine