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Examining the Gm18 and $m^1G$ Modification Positions in tRNA Sequences

  • Subramanian, Mayavan (Synthetic Biology and Biofuel Group, International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB)) ;
  • Srinivasan, Thangavelu (Synthetic Biology and Biofuel Group, International Center for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology (ICGEB)) ;
  • Sudarsanam, Dorairaj (DST-FIST Bioinformatics and Principal Investigator, School of Genomics and Bioinformatics, Department of Advanced Zoology and Biotechnology, Loyola College)
  • Received : 2013.12.28
  • Accepted : 2014.03.26
  • Published : 2014.06.30

Abstract

The tRNA structure contains conserved modifications that are responsible for its stability and are involved in the initiation and accuracy of the translation process. tRNA modification enzymes are prevalent in bacteria, archaea, and eukaryotes. tRNA Gm18 methyltransferase (TrmH) and tRNA $m^1G37$ methyltransferase (TrmD) are prevalent and essential enzymes in bacterial populations. TrmH involves itself in methylation process at the 2'-OH group of ribose at the 18th position of guanosine (G) in tRNAs. TrmD methylates the G residue next to the anticodon in selected tRNA subsets. Initially, $m^1G37$ modification was reported to take place on three conserved tRNA subsets ($tRNA^{Arg}$, $tRNA^{Leu}$, $tRNA^{Pro}$); later on, few archaea and eukaryotes organisms revealed that other tRNAs also have the $m^1G37$ modification. The present study reveals Gm18, $m^1G37$ modification, and positions of $m^1G$ that take place next to the anticodon in tRNA sequences. We selected extremophile organisms and attempted to retrieve the $m^1G$ and Gm18 modification bases in tRNA sequences. Results showed that the Gm18 modification G residue occurs in all tRNA subsets except three tRNAs ($tRNA^{Met}$, $tRNA^{Pro}$, $tRNA^{Val}$). Whereas the $m^1G37$ modification base G is formed only on $tRNA^{Arg}$, $tRNA^{Leu}$, $tRNA^{Pro}$, and $tRNA^{His}$, the rest of the tRNAs contain adenine (A) next to the anticodon. Thus, we hypothesize that Gm18 modification and $m^1G$ modification occur irrespective of a G residue in tRNAs.

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