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Efficient and faithful in vitro translation of natural and synthetic mRNA with human ribosomes

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Efficient systems for in vitro translation are of importance for biochemical and gene expression studies as well as for biotechnological developments. We optimized a cell-free translation system using subcellular fractions from human placenta and high quality placental tRNAs isolated using a simple and fast procedure. The postmitochondrial fraction or a reconstituted system containing soluble proteins plus polysomes were able to efficiently translate endogenous and exogenous mRNAs. Optima for ions, enzymes, tRNA and energy mix components were determined for a poly(U)-directed poly(Phe) synthesis test. The use of homologous tRNAPhe, omission of commercial creatine kinase, and addition of 3.5 mM spermidine at near physiological magnesium concentration (2.5 mM), were the most significant improvements. Under optimal conditions, poly(Phe) synthesis proceeded at a maximal initial rate of 1.2 Phe/80S/min at 37°C, while natural mRNA translation by S-30 started at a near in vivo estimated rate of 0.3-0.5 amino acid/80S/sec. Furthermore, natural mRNA directed the synthesis of a family of polypeptides closely resembling the pattern of cytoplasmic proteins in both, molecular weight and relative amounts. This efficient and faithful system is of interest for biochemical studies of the human translational machinery, as well as a basis for screening new drugs affecting protein synthesis in pathogenic microorganisms.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Centro de Investigaciones Biomédicas de la Universidad de Carabobo (BIOMED-UC), Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Maracay, Venezuela

Publication date: April 1, 2004

More about this publication?
  • The International Journal of Molecular Medicine is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal devoted to the publication of high quality studies related to the molecular mechanisms of human disease. The journal welcomes research on all aspects of molecular and clinical research, ranging from biochemistry to immunology, pathology, genetics, human genomics, microbiology, molecular pathogenesis, molecular cardiology, molecular surgery and molecular psychology.

    The International Journal of Molecular Medicine aims to provide an insight for researchers within the community in regard to developing molecular tools and identifying molecular targets for the diagnosis and treatment of a diverse number of human diseases.
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