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Characterization of RNA content in individual phase-separated coacervate microdroplets

Wollny, Damian and Vernot, Benjamin and Wang, Jie and Hondele, Maria and Hyman, Anthony and Weis, Karsten and Camp, J. Gray and Dora Tang, T. -Y. and Treutlein, Barbara. (2021) Characterization of RNA content in individual phase-separated coacervate microdroplets. bioRxiv.

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Abstract

Liquid-liquid phase separation or condensation is a form of macromolecular compartmentalization. Condensates formed by complex coacervation were hypothesized to have played a crucial part during the origin-of-life. In living cells, condensation organizes biomolecules into a wide range of membraneless compartments. Although RNA is a key component of condensation in cells and the central component of the RNA world hypothesis, little is known about what determines RNA accumulation in condensates and how single condensates differ in their RNA composition. Therefore, we developed an approach to read the RNA content from single condensates using high-throughput sequencing. We find that RNAs which are enriched for specific sequence motifs efficiently accumulate in condensates. These motifs show high sequence similarity to short interspersed elements (SINEs). We observed similar results for protein-derived condensates, demonstrating applicability across different in vitro reconstituted membraneless organelles. Thus, our results provide a new inroad to explore the RNA content of phase-separated droplets at single condensate resolution.Competing Interest StatementThe authors have declared no competing interest.
Faculties and Departments:05 Faculty of Science > Departement Biozentrum > Growth & Development > Biochemistry (Hondele)
UniBasel Contributors:Hondele, Maria
Item Type:Article
Article Subtype:Research Article
Publisher:Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
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Last Modified:03 Mar 2022 11:04
Deposited On:03 Mar 2022 11:04

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