R2D2, a bridge between the initiation and effector steps of the Drosophila RNAi pathway

Qinghua Liu, Tim A. Rand, Savitha Kalidas, Fenghe Du, Hyun Eui Kim, Dean P. Smith, Xiaodong Wang

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Abstract

The RNA interference (RNAi) pathway is initiated by processing long double-stranded RNA into small interfering RNA (siRNA). The siRNA-generating enzyme was purified from Drosophila S2 cells and consists of two stoichiometric subunits: Dicer-2 (DCR-2) and a previously unknown protein that we named R2D2. R2D2 is homologous to the Caenorhabditis elegans RNAi protein RDE-4. Association with R2D2 does not affect the enzymatic activity of DCR-2. Rather, the DCR-2/R2D2 complex, but not DCR-2 alone, binds to siRNA and enhances sequence-specific messenger RNA degradation mediated by the RNA-initiated silencing complex (RISC). These results indicate that R2D2 bridges the initiation and effector steps of the Drosophila RNAi pathway by facilitating siRNA passage from Dicer to RISC.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1921-1925
Number of pages5
JournalScience
Volume301
Issue number5641
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 26 2003

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Liu, Q., Rand, T. A., Kalidas, S., Du, F., Kim, H. E., Smith, D. P., & Wang, X. (2003). R2D2, a bridge between the initiation and effector steps of the Drosophila RNAi pathway. Science, 301(5641), 1921-1925. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.1088710