The exon junction complex (EJC) that is deposited onto spliced mRNAs upstream of exon–exon junctions plays important roles in multiple post-splicing gene expression events, such as mRNA export, surveillance, localization, and translation. However, a direct role for the human EJC in pre-mRNA splicing has not been fully understood. Using HeLa cells, we depleted one of the EJC core components, Y14, and the resulting transcriptome was analyzed by deep sequencing (RNA-Seq) and confirmed by RT–PCR. We found that Y14 is required for efficient and faithful splicing of a group of transcripts that is enriched in short intron-containing genes involved in mitotic cell-cycle progression. Tethering of EJC core components (Y14, eIF4AIII or MAGOH) to a model reporter pre-mRNA harboring a short intron showed that these core components are prerequisites for the splicing activation. Taken together, we conclude that the EJC core assembled on pre-mRNA is critical for efficient and faithful splicing of a specific subset of short introns in mitotic cell cycle-related genes.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Molecular Biology
- Computer Science Applications
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Organic Chemistry
- Inorganic Chemistry