Aubergine is a component of a nanos mRNA localization complex

Agata N. Becalska, Young Jung R. Kim, Nicolette G. Belletier, Dorothy A. Lerit, Kristina S. Sinsimer, Elizabeth R. Gavis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Localization of nanos (nos) mRNA to the posterior pole of the Drosophila oocyte is essential for abdominal segmentation and germline development during embryogenesis. Posterior localization is mediated by a complex cis-acting localization signal in the nos 3' untranslated region that comprises multiple partially redundant elements. Genetic analysis suggests that this signal is recognized by RNA-binding proteins and associated factors that package nos mRNA into a localization competent ribonucleoprotein complex. However, functional redundancy among localization elements has made the identification of individual localization factors difficult. Indeed, only a single direct-acting nos localization factor, Rumpelstiltskin (Rump), has been identified thus far. Through a sensitized genetic screen, we have now identified the Argonaute family member Aubergine (Aub) as a nos localization factor. Aub interacts with nos mRNA in vivo and co-purifies with Rump in an RNA-dependent manner. Our results support a role for Aub, independent of its function in RNA silencing, as a component of a nos mRNA localization complex.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)46-52
Number of pages7
JournalDevelopmental biology
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2011

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology
  • Developmental Biology


  • Aubergine
  • Drosophila
  • MRNA localization
  • Nanos
  • Rumplestiltskin
  • Segmentation


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