Supplementary Material for: Cytoplasmic RNA Granules in Somatic Maintenance

2018-05-30T12:25:37Z (GMT) by Moujaber O. Stochaj U.
Cytoplasmic RNA granules represent subcellular compartments that are enriched in protein-bound RNA species. RNA granules are produced by evolutionary divergent eukaryotes, including yeast, mammals, and plants. The functions of cytoplasmic RNA granules differ widely. They are dictated by the cell type and physiological state, which in turn is determined by intrinsic cell properties and environmental factors. RNA granules provide diverse cellular functions. However, all of the granules contribute to aspects of RNA metabolism. This is exemplified by transcription, RNA storage, silencing, and degradation, as well as mRNP remodeling and regulated translation. Several forms of cytoplasmic mRNA granules are linked to normal physiological processes. For instance, they may coordinate protein synthesis and thereby serve as posttranscriptional “operons”. RNA granules also participate in cytoplasmic mRNA trafficking, a process particularly well understood for neurons. Many forms of RNA granules support the preservation of somatic cell performance under normal and stress conditions. On the other hand, severe insults or disease can cause the formation and persistence of RNA granules that contribute to cellular dysfunction, especially in the nervous system. Neurodegeneration and many other diseases linked to RNA granules are associated with aging. Nevertheless, information related to the impact of aging on the various types of RNA granules is presently very limited. This review concentrates on cytoplasmic RNA granules and their role in somatic cell maintenance. We summarize the current knowledge on different types of RNA granules in the cytoplasm, their assembly and function under normal, stress, or disease conditions. Specifically, we discuss processing bodies, neuronal granules, stress granules, and other less characterized cytoplasmic RNA granules. Our focus is primarily on mammalian and yeast models, because they have been critical to unravel the physiological role of various RNA granules. RNA granules in plants and pathogens are briefly described. We conclude our viewpoint by summarizing the emerging concepts for RNA granule biology and the open questions that need to be addressed in future studies.