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A three-dimensional view of precursor messenger RNA metabolism within the mammalian nucleus.

Science (New York, N.Y.)

metabolism, Humans, Microscopy, Fluorescence, Nuclear Envelope, Nuclear Proteins, Cell Nucleus, Poly A, RNA Precursors, RNA, Messenger, Ribonucleoproteins, Small Nuclear

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      A quantitative three-dimensional analysis of nuclear components involved in precursor messenger RNA metabolism was performed with a combination of fluorescence hybridization, immunofluorescence, and digital imaging microscopy. Polyadenylate [poly(A)] RNA-rich transcript domains were discrete, internal nuclear regions that formed a ventrally positioned horizontal array in monolayer cells. A dimmer, sometimes strand-like, poly(A) RNA signal was dispersed throughout the nucleoplasm. Spliceosome assembly factor SC-35 localized within the center of individual domains. These data support a nuclear model in which there is a specific topological arrangement of noncontiguous centers involved in precursor messenger RNA metabolism, from which RNA transport toward the nuclear envelope radiates.

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