Identification of factors required for m 6 A mRNA methylation in Arabidopsis reveals a role for the conserved E3 ubiquitin ligase HAKAI

New Phytol. 2017 Jul;215(1):157-172. doi: 10.1111/nph.14586. Epub 2017 May 15.

Abstract

N6-adenosine methylation (m6 A) of mRNA is an essential process in most eukaryotes, but its role and the status of factors accompanying this modification are still poorly understood. Using combined methods of genetics, proteomics and RNA biochemistry, we identified a core set of mRNA m6 A writer proteins in Arabidopsis thaliana. The components required for m6 A in Arabidopsis included MTA, MTB, FIP37, VIRILIZER and the E3 ubiquitin ligase HAKAI. Downregulation of these proteins led to reduced relative m6 A levels and shared pleiotropic phenotypes, which included aberrant vascular formation in the root, indicating that correct m6 A methylation plays a role in developmental decisions during pattern formation. The conservation of these proteins amongst eukaryotes and the demonstration of a role in writing m6 A for the E3 ubiquitin ligase HAKAI is likely to be of considerable relevance beyond the plant sciences.

Keywords: Arabidopsis; HAKAI; N6-adenosine methylation (m6A); VIRILIZER; mRNA methylation; protoxylem.

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine / metabolism
  • Arabidopsis / metabolism*
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / genetics
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / metabolism
  • Arabidopsis Proteins / physiology*
  • Conserved Sequence
  • Methylation
  • Methyltransferases / genetics
  • Methyltransferases / metabolism
  • Methyltransferases / physiology*
  • Plants, Genetically Modified / metabolism
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism*
  • Sequence Alignment
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases / genetics
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases / metabolism
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases / physiology*

Substances

  • Arabidopsis Proteins
  • RNA, Messenger
  • 6-methyladenine mRNA methyltransferase
  • Methyltransferases
  • Ubiquitin-Protein Ligases
  • Adenosine