Summary information and primary citation

3p59; DSSR-derived features in text and JSON formats
X-ray (2.18 Å)
First crystal structure of a RNA nanosquare
Dibrov SM, McLean J, Parsons J, Hermann T (2011): "Self-assembling RNA square." Proc.Natl.Acad.Sci.USA, 108, 6405-6408. doi: 10.1073/pnas.1017999108.
The three-dimensional structures of noncoding RNA molecules reveal recurring architectural motifs that have been exploited for the design of artificial RNA nanomaterials. Programmed assembly of RNA nanoobjects from autonomously folding tetraloop-receptor complexes as well as junction motifs has been achieved previously through sequence-directed hybridization of complex sets of long oligonucleotides. Due to size and complexity, structural characterization of artificial RNA nanoobjects has been limited to low-resolution microscopy studies. Here we present the design, construction, and crystal structure determination at 2.2 Å of the smallest yet square-shaped nanoobject made entirely of double-stranded RNA. The RNA square is comprised of 100 residues and self-assembles from four copies each of two oligonucleotides of 10 and 15 bases length. Despite the high symmetry on the level of secondary structure, the three-dimensional architecture of the square is asymmetric, with all four corners adopting distinct folding patterns. We demonstrate the programmed self-assembly of RNA squares from complex mixtures of corner units and establish a concept to exploit the RNA square as a combinatorial nanoscale platform.

Cartoon-block schematics in six views (download the tarball)

PyMOL session file Download PDB file View in 3Dmol.js