Cyclin-dependent kinases (CDKs) play key regulatory roles in diverse cellular functions, including cell-cycle progression, transcription and translation. In plants, CDKs have been classified into several groups, named A through to G, but the functions of most are poorly characterized. CDKCs are known to phosphorylate the C-terminal domain (CTD) of RNA polymerase II (RNAP II), and therefore the CDKC-cyclinT (CycT) complex may have a role similar to the animal CDK9-CycT complex of the positive transcription elongation factor b (P-TEFb). However, we found that the predicted structure of the Arabidopsis CDKC2 protein is more similar to the mammalian cdc2-related kinase, CRK7, than to CDK9. CRK7 is proposed to link transcription with splicing, and CDKC2 contains all the structural features of CRK7 that make the latter distinct from CDK9. Consistent with this, we show that GFP-CDKC2 fusion proteins co-localize with spliceosomal components, that the expression of CDKC2 modifies the location of these components, and that co-localization was dependent on the transcriptional status of the cells and on CDKC2-kinase activity. We propose, therefore, that the Arabidopsis CDKC2 combines the functions of both CRK7 and CDK9, and could also couple splicing with transcription.
|Number of pages||16|
|Early online date||16 Jan 2008|
|Publication status||Published - Apr 2008|
- cyclin-dependent kinases (CDK)
- splicing factors
- RNA polymerase II
- cell cycle