Examining the Protein Interactome and Subcellular Localization of RNase J2 Complexes in Streptococcus mutans

Rong Mu, Pushkar Shinde, Zhengzhong Zou, Jens Kreth, Justin Merritt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Regulated RNA turnover is vital for the control of gene expression in all cellular life. In Escherichia coli, this process is largely controlled by a stable degradosome complex containing RNase E and a variety of additional enzymes. In the Firmicutes phylum, species lack RNase E and often encode the paralogous enzymes RNase J1 and RNase J2. Unlike RNase J1, surprisingly little is known about the regulatory function and protein interactions of RNase J2, despite being a central pleiotropic regulator for the streptococci and other closely related organisms. Using crosslink coimmunoprecipitation in Streptococcus mutans, we have identified the major proteins found within RNase J2 protein complexes located in the cytoplasm and at the cell membrane. In both subcellular fractions, RNase J2 exhibited the most robust interactions with RNase J1, while additional transient and/or weaker “degradosome-like” interactions were also detected. In addition, RNase J2 exhibits multiple novel interactions that have not been previously reported for any RNase J proteins, some of which were highly biased for either the cytoplasmic or membrane fractions. We also determined that the RNase J2 C-terminal domain (CTD) encodes a structure that is likely conserved among RNase J enzymes and may have an analogous function to the C-terminal portion of RNase E. While we did observe a number of parallels between the RNase J2 interactome and the E. coli degradosome paradigm, our results suggest that S. mutans degradosomes are either unlikely to exist or are quite distinct from those of E. coli.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2150
JournalFrontiers in Microbiology
StatePublished - Sep 18 2019


  • Gram-positive
  • RNA degradosome
  • Streptococcus mutans
  • coimmunoprecipitation
  • ribonuclease J1
  • ribonuclease J2

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Microbiology (medical)


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