Stationary Phase Expression and Aminoacylation of a tRNA-like Small RNA

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Genome‐scale analyses have shown numerous functional duplications in the canonical translational machinery. One of the most striking examples is the occurrence of unrelated class I and class II lysyl‐transfer RNA synthetases (LysRS), which together may aminoacylate non‐canonical tRNAs. We show that, in Bacillus cereus, the two LysRSs together aminoacylate a small RNA of unknown function named tRNAOther, and that the aminoacylated product stably binds translation elongation factor Tu. In vitro reconstitution of a defined lysylation system showed that Lys‐tRNAOther is synthesized in the presence of both LysRSs, but not by either alone. In vivo analyses showed that the class 2 LysRS was present both during and after exponential growth, whereas the class I enzyme and tRNAOther were predominantly produced during the stationary phase. Aminoacylation of tRNAOther was also found to be confined to the stationary phase, which suggests a role for this non‐canonical tRNA in growth‐phase‐specific protein synthesis.


This article was originally published in EMBO Reports, volume 6, in 2005. https://doi.org/10.1038/sj.embor.7400474


European Molecular Biology Organization