Determinants in mammalian telomerase RNA that mediate enzyme processivity and cross-species incompatibility

Jiunn Liang Chen, Carol W. Greider

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

112 Scopus citations


Telomerase contains two essential components: an RNA molecule that templates telomeric repeat synthesis and a catalytic protein component. Human telomerase is processive, while the mouse enzyme has much lower processivity. We have identified nucleotide determinants in the telomerase RNA that are responsible for this difference in processivity. Mutations adjacent to the template region of human and mouse telomerase RNA significantly altered telomerase processivity both in vitro and in vivo. We also identified functionally important nucleotides in the pseudoknot domain of telomerase RNA that potentially mediate the incompatibility between human TERT and mouse telomerase RNA. These experiments identify essential residues of the telomerase RNA that regulate telomerase activity and processivity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)304-314
Number of pages11
JournalEMBO Journal
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jan 15 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Processivity
  • Telomerase
  • Telomerase RNA
  • Telomeres
  • Translocation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Determinants in mammalian telomerase RNA that mediate enzyme processivity and cross-species incompatibility'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this