Cis-acting elements distinct from the 5' splice site promote U1- independent pre-mRNA splicing

John D. Crispino, Jacqueline E. Mermoud, Angus I. Lamond, Phillip A. Sharp*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


We have identified a class of pre-mRNAs that are spliced in HeLa extracts depleted for U1 snRNP (ΔU1 extracts). Previously, we described pre- mRNAs that can be spliced in ΔU1 extracts only when high concentrations of SR splicing factors are added. In contrast, the substrates characterized here are efficiently processed in ΔU1 extracts without the addition of excess SR proteins. The members of this class comprise both a naturally occurring pre- mRNA, from the Drosophila fushi tarazu gene, and a chimera containing sequences from two different pre-mRNAs that individually are dependent upon U1 snRNP or excess SR proteins. Several sequence elements account for the variations in dependence on U1 snRNP and SR proteins for splicing. In one pre-mRNA, a single element was identified adjacent to the branch site. In the other, two elements flanking the 5' splice site were found to be critical. This U1-independent splicing reaction may provide a mechanism for cells to control the extent of processing of different classes of pre-mRNAs in response to altered activities of SR proteins, and furthermore suggests that U1 snRNP-independent splicing may not be uncommon.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)664-673
Number of pages10
Issue number7
StatePublished - 1996


  • 5' splice site recognition
  • Ftz pre-mRNA
  • SC35
  • SR proteins

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology


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