Main content area

Arabidopsis PTB1 and PTB2 proteins negatively regulate splicing of a mini‐exon splicing reporter and affect alternative splicing of endogenous genes differentially

Simpson, Craig G., Lewandowska, Dominika, Liney, Michele, Davidson, Diane, Chapman, Sean, Fuller, John, McNicol, Jim, Shaw, Paul, Brown, John W. S.
new phytologist 2014 v.203 no.2 pp. 424-436
Arabidopsis thaliana, enhancer elements, proteins, protoplasts, alternative splicing, gene overexpression, mutation, reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction, cytosine, potatoes, beta-fructofuranosidase, RNA, introns
This paper examines the function of Arabidopsis thaliana AtPTB1 and AtPTB2 as plant splicing factors. The effect on splicing of overexpression of AtPTB1 and AtPTB2 was analysed in an in vivo protoplast transient expression system with a novel mini‐exon splicing reporter. A range of mutations in pyrimidine‐rich sequences were compared with and without AtPTB and NpU2AF⁶⁵ overexpression. Splicing analyses of constructs in protoplasts and RNA from overexpression lines used high‐resolution reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT‐PCR). AtPTB1 and AtPTB2 reduced inclusion/splicing of the potato invertase mini‐exon splicing reporter, indicating that these proteins can repress plant intron splicing. Mutation of the polypyrimidine tract and closely associated Cytosine and Uracil‐rich (CU‐rich) sequences, upstream of the mini‐exon, altered repression by AtPTB1 and AtPTB2. Coexpression of a plant orthologue of U2AF⁶⁵ alleviated the splicing repression of AtPTB1. Mutation of a second CU‐rich upstream of the mini‐exon 3′ splice site led to a decline in mini‐exon splicing, indicating the presence of a splicing enhancer sequence. Finally, RT‐PCR of AtPTB overexpression lines with c. 90 known alternative splicing (AS) events showed that AtPTBs significantly altered AS of over half the events. AtPTB1 and AtPTB2 are splicing factors that influence alternative splicing. This occurs in the potato invertase mini‐exon via the polypyrimidine tract and associated pyrimidine‐rich sequence.