Concentration and localization of co-expressed ELAV/Hu proteins control specificity of mRNA processing

Emanuela Zaharieva, Irmgard U. Haussmann, Ulrike Br�uer, Matthias Soller

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    Neuronally coexpressed ELAV/Hu proteins comprise a family of highly related RNA binding proteins which bind to very similar cognate sequences. How this redundancy is linked to in vivo function and how gene-specific regulation is achieved have not been clear. Analysis of mutants in Drosophila ELAV/Hu family proteins ELAV, FNE, and RBP9 and of genetic interactions among them indicates that they have mostly independent roles in neuronal development and function but have converging roles in the regulation of synaptic plasticity. Conversely, ELAV, FNE, RBP9, and human HuR bind ELAV target RNA in vitro with similar affinities. Likewise, all can regulate alternative splicing of ELAV target genes in nonneuronal wing disc cells and substitute for ELAV in eye development upon artificially increased expression; they can also substantially restore ELAV's biological functions when expressed under the control of the elav gene. Furthermore, ELAV-related Sex-lethal can regulate ELAV targets, and ELAV/Hu proteins can interfere with sexual differentiation. An ancient relationship to Sex-lethal is revealed by gonadal expression of RBP9, providing a maternal fail-safe for dosage compensation. Our results indicate that highly related ELAV/Hu RNA binding proteins select targets for mRNA processing through alteration of their expression levels and subcellular localization but only minimally by altered RNA binding specificity
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)3104-3115
    Number of pages12
    JournalMolecular and Cellular Biology
    Issue number18
    Publication statusPublished (VoR) - 9 Sept 2015


    Dive into the research topics of 'Concentration and localization of co-expressed ELAV/Hu proteins control specificity of mRNA processing'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this