Molecular cloning of the gene encoding an acidic ribosomal protein of the P2 family from the ciliate Euplotes raikovi

Graziano Di Giuseppe, Annarita Wirz, Cristina Miceli

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We have characterized a macronuclear gene of the ciliate protozoan Euplotes raikovi, which encodes an acidic ribosomal protein of the P protein family. This gene shows the typical organization of the hypotrich ciliate macronuclear 'gene-sized' molecules with Euplotes telomeres at the ends. The longest open reading frame encodes a conceptual protein of 113 amino acid residues, with a molecular mass and pI value of 11.45 kDa and 3.97, respectively. By using sequence homology analysis, the protein was found to belong to the ribosomal P2 protein family and was named Er P2, where Er stands for Euplotes raikovi. These proteins, generally called A (acidic/alanine rich) proteins in prokaryotes and P (phosphorylated) proteins in eukaryotes, in which they are divided into P1 and P2 families, play a role in the elongation step of protein synthesis. Approximately 40% amino acid sequence identity was found between the cloned protein and other known protozoan ribosomal P2 proteins. Within its N-terminal half, this protein contains several potential kinase phosphorylation sites. Protein Er P2 differs markedly from the consensus P protein sequence in its C-terminal region, usually highly conserved among eukaryotic ribosomal P proteins, and shows similarities with the C-terminus of the archaebacterial ribosomal A proteins. To our knowledge, this E. raikovi protein represents the first demonstration of a ribosome-associated protein of the P2 family in a ciliate protozoan.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)626-631
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Eukaryotic Microbiology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1999


  • Large ribosomal subunit
  • P proteins
  • Phosphorylated proteins
  • Protein translation
  • Protozoa

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Microbiology


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