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The U2 RNA analogue of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense: implications for a splicing mechanism in trypanosomes.

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PMC

Abstract

We have isolated the gene coding for the U2 analogue in trypanosomes. The 148 nucleotide long U2 RNA is capped and transcribed from a single copy gene. The 5' half of the molecule is highly homologous to mammalian U2 RNA, while the 3' half does not show any significant sequence homology with the mammalian counterpart. Nevertheless, the trypanosome U2 RNA can be folded into a secondary structure resembling the one proposed for U2 RNA. The presence of a U2 analogue and most likely other U RNAs in trypanosomes suggests that splicing is involved at some point in the maturation of mRNA. Possible interactions of the U2 RNA with the spliced leader RNA are considered.

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