Possible mechanism of nuclear translocation of proteasomes

FEBS Lett. 1990 Oct 1;271(1-2):41-6. doi: 10.1016/0014-5793(90)80367-r.


Proteasomes (multicatalytic proteinase complexes), which are identical to the ubiquitous eukaryotic 20S particles, are localized in both the cytoplasm and the nucleus, but the mechanism of their co-localization in the two compartments is unknown. On examination of the primary structures of subunits of proteasomes, a consensus sequence for nuclear translocation of proteins, X-X-K-K(R)-X-K(R) (where X is any residue), was found to be present in some subunits and to be highly conserved in the subunits of a wide range of eukaryotes. In addition, proteasomal subunits were found to bear a cluster of acidic amino acid residues and also a potential tyrosine phosphorylation site that was located in the same polypeptide chain as the nuclear location signal. These structural properties suggest that two sets of clusters with positive and negative charges serve to regulate the translocation of proteasomes from the cytoplasm to the nucleus, and that phosphorylation of tyrosine in certain subunits may play an additional role in transfer of proteasomes into the nucleus.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Biological Transport
  • Cell Nucleus / enzymology*
  • Consensus Sequence
  • Cysteine Endopeptidases / metabolism*
  • Cytoplasm / enzymology
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Multienzyme Complexes / metabolism*
  • Phosphorylation
  • Proteasome Endopeptidase Complex
  • Signal Transduction


  • Multienzyme Complexes
  • Cysteine Endopeptidases
  • Proteasome Endopeptidase Complex