A targeted oligonucleotide enhancer of SMN2 Exon 7 splicing forms competing quadruplex and protein complexes in functional conditions

Lindsay D. Smith, Rachel L. Dickinson, Christian M. Lucas, Alex Cousins, Alexey A. Malygin, Carika Weldon, Andrew J. Perrett, Andrew R. Bottrill, Mark S. Searle, Glenn A. Burley, Ian C. Eperon

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Abstract

The use of oligonucleotides to activate the splicing of selected exons is limited by a poor understanding of the mechanisms affected. A targeted bifunctional oligonucleotide enhancer of splicing (TOES) anneals to SMN2 exon 7 and carries an exonic splicing enhancer (ESE) sequence. We show that it stimulates splicing specifically of intron 6 in the presence of repressing sequences in intron 7. Complementarity to the 5' end of exon 7 increases U2AF65 binding, but the ESE sequence is required for efficient recruitment of U2 snRNP. The ESE forms at least three coexisting discrete states: a quadruplex, a complex containing only hnRNP F/H, and a complex enriched in the activator SRSF1. Neither hnRNP H nor quadruplex formation contributes to ESE activity. The results suggest that splicing limited by weak signals can be rescued by rapid exchange of TOES oligonucleotides in various complexes and raise the possibility that SR proteins associate transiently with ESEs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)193-205
Number of pages13
JournalCell Reports
Volume9
Issue number1
Early online date25 Sep 2014
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 9 Oct 2014

Keywords

  • oligonucleotides
  • exons
  • exonic splicing

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    Smith, L. D., Dickinson, R. L., Lucas, C. M., Cousins, A., Malygin, A. A., Weldon, C., Perrett, A. J., Bottrill, A. R., Searle, M. S., Burley, G. A., & Eperon, I. C. (2014). A targeted oligonucleotide enhancer of SMN2 Exon 7 splicing forms competing quadruplex and protein complexes in functional conditions. Cell Reports, 9(1), 193-205. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.celrep.2014.08.051