Reading m 6 A in the Transcriptome: m 6 A-Binding Proteins

Trends Cell Biol. 2018 Feb;28(2):113-127. doi: 10.1016/j.tcb.2017.10.001. Epub 2017 Nov 2.


N6-Methyladenosine (m6A) is the most prevalent post-transcriptional modification of eukaryotic mRNA and long noncoding RNA. m6A mediates its effects primarily by recruiting proteins, including the multiprotein eukaryotic initiation factor 3 complex and a set of proteins that contain the YTH domain. Here we describe the mechanisms by which YTH domain-containing proteins bind m6A and influence the fate of m6A-containing RNA in mammalian cells. We discuss the diverse, and occasionally contradictory, functions ascribed to these proteins and the emerging concepts that are influencing our understanding of these proteins and their effects on the epitranscriptome.

Keywords: N(6)-methyl adenosine; RNA metabolism; YTH proteins; m(6)A modification; splicing; translational regulation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adenosine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Adenosine / genetics
  • Adenosine / metabolism
  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Carrier Proteins / genetics*
  • Carrier Proteins / metabolism
  • Humans
  • Phylogeny
  • RNA, Long Noncoding / genetics
  • RNA, Long Noncoding / metabolism
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Reading Frames / physiology*
  • Transcriptome / physiology*


  • Carrier Proteins
  • RNA, Long Noncoding
  • RNA, Messenger
  • N6-methyladenosine (m6A)
  • Adenosine