Elongator Subunit 3 (Elp3) Is Required for Zebrafish Trunk Development

Int J Mol Sci. 2020 Jan 31;21(3):925. doi: 10.3390/ijms21030925.


Transfer RNAs (tRNAs) are the most post-transcriptionally modified RNA species. Some of these modifications, especially the ones located in the anti-codon loop, are required for decoding capabilities of tRNAs. Such is the case for 5-methoxy-carbonyl-methyl-2-thio-uridine (mcm5s2U), synthetized by the Elongator complex. Mutants for its sub-units display pleiotropic phenotypes. In this paper, we analyze the role of elp3 (Elongator catalytic sub-unit) in zebrafish development. We found that it is required for trunk development; elp3 knock-down animals presented diminished levels of mcm5s2U and sonic hedgehog (Shh) signaling activity. Activation of this pathway was sufficient to revert the phenotype caused by elp3 knockdown, indicating a functional relationship between Elongator and Shh through a yet unknown molecular mechanism.

Keywords: elongator complex; tRNA modification; zebrafish.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Gene Knockdown Techniques
  • Hedgehog Proteins / metabolism
  • Histone Acetyltransferases / genetics*
  • Histone Acetyltransferases / metabolism*
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / genetics*
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins / metabolism*
  • RNA, Transfer / genetics
  • Signal Transduction
  • Thiouridine / analogs & derivatives
  • Thiouridine / metabolism
  • Zebrafish / genetics
  • Zebrafish / growth & development*
  • Zebrafish / metabolism
  • Zebrafish Proteins / metabolism


  • 5-carbomethoxymethyl-2-thiouridine
  • Hedgehog Proteins
  • Nerve Tissue Proteins
  • Shha protein, zebrafish
  • Zebrafish Proteins
  • Thiouridine
  • RNA, Transfer
  • ELP3 protein, zebrafish
  • Histone Acetyltransferases