The maternally expressed Drosophila gene encoding the chromatin-binding protein BJ1 is a homolog of the vertebrate gene Regulator of Chromatin Condensation, RCC1.

Max-Planck-Institut für Entwicklungsbiologie, Tübingen, FRG.
The EMBO Journal (Impact Factor: 10.75). 06/1991; 10(5):1225-36.
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Using monoclonal antibodies I have identified a nuclear protein of Drosophila, BJ1 (Mr approximately 68 kd), and isolated its gene. Biochemical analysis demonstrates that the BJ1 protein is associated with nucleosomes and is released from chromatin by agents which intercalate into DNA, as previously shown for the high mobility group proteins (HMGs). On polytene chromosomes the protein is localized in all bands, with no preference for particular loci. Both the BJ1 protein and in particular the BJ1 mRNA are strongly expressed maternally. In early embryos all nuclei contain equal amounts of BJ1. During neuroblast formation, BJ1 mRNA becomes restricted to cells of the central nervous system, and higher protein levels are found in the nuclei of this tissue. In late embryonic stages, the mRNA almost completely disappears, but significant amounts of BJ1 protein persist until morphogenesis. The BJ1 gene encodes a 547 amino acid polypeptide featuring two different types of internal repeats. The sequence from amino acids 46 to 417 containing seven repeats of the first type has been highly conserved in evolution. 45% of the amino acids in this region are conserved in seven similar tandem repeats of the human gene Regulator of Chromatin Condensation, RCC1. The phenotype of a cell line carrying a mutation of RCC1 suggested a main function for this gene in cell cycle control. A yeast gene, SRM1/PRP20, also contains these repeats and shows 30% amino acid identity to BJ1 in this region. Mutations in this gene perturb mRNA metabolism, disrupt nuclear structure and alter the signal transduction pathway for the mating pheromone. Complementation experiments argue for a common function of these genes in the different species. I propose that their gene products bind to the chromatin to establish or maintain a proper higher order structure as a prerequisite for a regulated gene expression. Disruption of this structure could cause both mis-expression and default repression of genes, which might explain the pleiotropic phenotypes of the mutants.

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    ABSTRACT: The Bj1 gene encodes the Drosophila homolog of RCC1, the guanine-nucleotide exchange factor for RanGTPase. Here, we provide the first phenotypic characterization of a RCC1 homolog in a developmental model system. We identified Bj1 (dRCC1) in a genetic screen to identify mutations that alter central nervous system development. We find that zygotic dRCC1 mutant embryos exhibit specific defects in the development and differentiation of lateral CNS neurons although cell division and the cell cycle appear grossly normal. dRCC1 mutant nerve cords contain abnormally large cells with compartmentalized nuclei and exhibit increased transcription in the lateral CNS. As RCC1 is an important component of the nucleocytoplasmic transport machinery, we find that dRCC1 function is required for nuclear import of nuclear localization signal sequence (NLS)-carrying cargo molecules. Finally, we show that dRCC1 is required for cell proliferation and/or survival during germline, eye and wing development and that dRCC1 appears to facilitate apoptosis.
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    ABSTRACT: Accurate control of the Ras-related nuclear protein (Ran) GTPase cycle depends on the regulated activity of regulator of chromosome condensation 1 (RCC1), Ran's nucleotide exchange factor. RanBP1 has been characterized as a coactivator of the Ran GTPase-activating protein RanGAP1. RanBP1 can also form a stable complex with Ran and RCC1, although the dynamics and function of this complex remain poorly understood. Here, we show that formation of the heterotrimeric RCC1/Ran/RanBP1 complex in M phase Xenopus egg extracts controls both RCC1's enzymatic activity and partitioning between the chromatin-bound and soluble pools of RCC1. This mechanism is critical for spatial control of Ran-guanosine triphosphate (GTP) gradients that guide mitotic spindle assembly. Moreover, phosphorylation of RanBP1 drives changes in the dynamics of chromatin-bound RCC1 pools at the metaphase-anaphase transition. Our findings reveal an important mitotic role for RanBP1, controlling the spatial distribution and magnitude of mitotic Ran-GTP production and thereby ensuring accurate execution of Ran-dependent mitotic events. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.


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