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Arsenite-inducible RNA-associated protein (AIRAP) protects cells from arsenite toxicity

By John Sok, Marcella Calfon, Jinyu Lu, Peter Lichtlen, Scott G. Clark and David Ron


Exposure of cells to arsenicals activates multiple stress pathways resulting in the induction of specific genes whose identity and role in the adaptation to arsenical-induced cellular stress are poorly understood. We report here the identification of a novel gene encoding an arsenite-inducible, cysteine- and histidine-rich RNA-associated protein, AIRAP, that is conserved among mammals, Drosophila and C elegans. Immunochemistry and cell fractionation experiments indicate that, when induced, AIRAP is present in both the nucleus and the cytoplasm, and cross-linking experiments indicate that it associates with RNA in vivo. The expression of a C elegans homologue of AIRAP, aip-1, is also induced by exposure to arsenite, and expression of an aip-1::gfp transgene is most pronounced in hypodermal cells. RNA-mediated interference (RNAi) of aip-1 lowers the resistance of nematodes to arsenite yet does not appear to affect viability under standard growth conditions. These experiments suggest a role for AIRAP/AIP-1 in protecting cells from the toxic effects of arsenite

Topics: Original Articles
Publisher: Cell Stress Society International
Year: 2001
DOI identifier: 10.1379/1466-1268(2001)006<0006:airapa>;2
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Provided by: PubMed Central
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