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Splicing‐dependent NMD does not require the EJC in Schizosaccharomyces pombe

Jikai Wen, Saverio Brogna

Author Affiliations

  1. Jikai Wen1 and
  2. Saverio Brogna*,1
  1. 1 School of Biosciences, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham, UK
  1. *Corresponding author. School of Biosciences, University of Birmingham, Edgbaston, Birmingham B15 2TT, UK. Tel.: +44 121 414 5569; Fax: +44 121 414 5925; E-mail: s.brogna{at}
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Nonsense‐mediated mRNA decay (NMD) is a translation‐linked process that destroys mRNAs with premature translation termination codons (PTCs). In mammalian cells, NMD is also linked to pre‐mRNA splicing, usually PTCs trigger strong NMD only when positioned upstream of at least one intron. The exon junction complex (EJC) is believed to mediate the link between splicing and NMD in these systems. Here, we report that in Schizosaccharomyces pombe splicing also enhances NMD, but against the EJC model prediction, an intron stimulated NMD regardless of whether it is positioned upstream or downstream of the PTC and EJC components are not required. Still the effect of splicing seems to be direct—we have found that the important NMD determinant is the proximity of an intron to the PTC, not just the occurrence of splicing. On the basis of these results, we propose a new model to explain how splicing could affect NMD.

  • Received June 20, 2009.
  • Accepted March 4, 2010.
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This is an open‐access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. This license does not permit commercial exploitation without specific permission.

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