The SRP3-1 mutation is an allele-specific suppressor of temperature-sensitive mutations in the largest subunit (A190) of RNA polymerase I from Saccharomyces cerevisiae. Two mutations known to be suppressed by SRP3-1 are in the putative zinc-binding domain of A190. We have cloned the SRP3 gene by using its suppressor activity and determined its complete nucleotide sequence. We conclude from the following evidence that the SRP3 gene encodes the second-largest subunit (A135) of RNA polymerase I. First, the deduced amino acid sequence of the gene product contains several regions with high homology to the corresponding regions of the second-largest subunits of RNA polymerases of various origins, including those of RNA polymerase II and III from S. cerevisiae. Second, the deduced amino acid sequence contains known amino acid sequences of two tryptic peptides from the A135 subunit of RNA polymerase I purified from S. cerevisiae. Finally, a strain was constructed in which transcription of the SRP3 gene was controlled by the inducible GAL7 promoter. When this strain, which can grow on galactose but not on glucose, was shifted from galactose medium to glucose medium, a large decrease in the cellular concentration of A135 was observed by Western blot analysis. We have also identified the specific amino acid alteration responsible for suppression by SRP3-1 and found that it is located within the putative zinc-binding domain conserved among the second-largest subunits of eucaryotic RNA polymerases. From these results, it is suggested that this putative zinc-binding domain is in physical proximity to and interacts with the putative zinc-binding domain of the A190 subunit.
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