Modeling the ribosomal small subunit dynamic in Saccharomyces cerevisiae based on TCP-seq data

Nucleic Acids Res. 2022 Feb 22;50(3):1297-1316. doi: 10.1093/nar/gkac021.


Translation Complex Profile Sequencing (TCP-seq), a protocol that was developed and implemented on Saccharomyces cerevisiae, provides the footprints of the small subunit (SSU) of the ribosome (with additional factors) across the entire transcriptome of the analyzed organism. In this study, based on the TCP-seq data, we developed for the first-time a predictive model of the SSU density and analyzed the effect of transcript features on the dynamics of the SSU scan in the 5'UTR. Among others, our model is based on novel tools for detecting complex statistical relations tailored to TCP-seq. We quantitatively estimated the effect of several important features, including the context of the upstream AUG, the upstream ORF length and the mRNA folding strength. Specifically, we suggest that around 50% of the variance related to the read counts (RC) distribution near a start codon can be attributed to the AUG context score. We provide the first large scale direct quantitative evidence that shows that indeed AUG context affects the small sub-unit movement. In addition, we suggest that strong folding may cause the detachment of the SSU from the mRNA. We also identified a number of novel sequence motifs that can affect the SSU scan; some of these motifs affect transcription factors and RNA binding proteins. The results presented in this study provide a better understanding of the biophysical aspects related to the SSU scan along the 5'UTR and of translation initiation in S. cerevisiae, a fundamental step toward a comprehensive modeling of initiation.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • 5' Untranslated Regions
  • Codon, Initiator / metabolism
  • Protein Biosynthesis
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism
  • Ribosomes / genetics
  • Ribosomes / metabolism
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins* / genetics
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins* / metabolism
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae* / genetics
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae* / metabolism


  • 5' Untranslated Regions
  • Codon, Initiator
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae Proteins