RNA-binding ubiquitin ligases (RBULs) have the potential to link RNA-mediated mechanisms to protein ubiquitylation. Despite this, the cellular functions, substrates and interaction partners of most RBULs remain poorly characterized. Affinity purification (AP) combined with quantitative mass spectrometry (MS)-based proteomics is a powerful approach for analyzing protein functions. Mapping the physiological interaction partners of RNA-binding proteins has been hampered by their intrinsic properties, in particular the existence of low-complexity regions, which are prone to engage in non-physiological interactions. Here, we used an adapted AP approach to identify the interaction partners of human RBULs harboring different RNA-binding domains. To increase the likelihood of recovering physiological interactions, we combined control and bait-expressing cells prior to lysis. In this setup, only stable interactions that were originally present in the cell will be identified. We exploit gene function similarity between the bait proteins and their interactors to benchmark our approach in its ability to recover physiological interactions. We reveal that RBULs engage in stable interactions with RNA-binding proteins involved in different steps of RNA metabolism as well as with components of the ubiquitin conjugation machinery and ubiquitin-binding proteins. Our results thus demonstrate their capacity to link posttranscriptional regulation with the ubiquitin system.
Scientific Reports – Springer Journals
Published: Nov 29, 2017
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