A model for RNA editing in kinetoplastid mitochondria: "guide" RNA molecules transcribed from maxicircle DNA provide the edited information

Cell. 1990 Jan 26;60(2):189-98. doi: 10.1016/0092-8674(90)90735-w.


A class of small RNA molecules possibly involved in RNA editing is present in the mitochondrion of Leishmania tarentolae. These "guide" RNA (gRNA) molecules are encoded in intergenic regions of the mitochondrial maxicircle DNA and contain sequences that represent precise complementary versions of the mature mRNAs within the edited regions. In addition, the 5' portions of several gRNAs can form hybrids with mRNAs just 3' of the preedited region. A model is presented in which a partial hybrid formed between the gRNA and preedited mRNA is substrate for multiple cycles of cleavage, addition or deletion of uridylates, and religation, eventually resulting in a complete hybrid between the gRNA and the mature edited mRNA.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Blotting, Northern
  • Blotting, Southern
  • DNA, Circular / genetics*
  • DNA, Kinetoplast
  • Leishmania / genetics*
  • Mitochondria / metabolism
  • Models, Genetic
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Nucleic Acid Hybridization
  • Oligonucleotide Probes / chemical synthesis
  • RNA / genetics*
  • RNA Probes
  • RNA, Guide
  • Sequence Homology, Nucleic Acid
  • Single-Strand Specific DNA and RNA Endonucleases
  • Software
  • Transcription, Genetic*


  • DNA, Circular
  • DNA, Kinetoplast
  • Oligonucleotide Probes
  • RNA Probes
  • RNA, Guide
  • RNA
  • Single-Strand Specific DNA and RNA Endonucleases