|PROSITE documentation PDOC50821|
The PAZ domain is a domain of about 110 amino-acids which has been named after three of the proteins containing it: Piwi, Argonaute and Zwille/Pinhead . It is found in the Argonaute and the Dicer protein families, whose members are implicated in stem-cell fate determination and post-transcriptional gene silencing (PTGS) through RNA interference (RNAi) [2,3]. PTGS RNAi is the mechanism through which double-stranded RNAs (dsRNAs) silence cognate genes. It is characterized by the presence of RNAs of about 22 nucleotides in length that are homologous to the gene to be suppressed. These nucleotide sequences serve as guide sequences that instruct the RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC) nuclease to destroy specific mRNAs . Proteins belonging to the Dicer family are enzymes that are involved in the generation of putative guide RNAs by specifically cleaving dsRNAs . The function of proteins of the Argonaute family is not known, but they could be implicated in transcriptional initiation .
Although the sequence of the PAZ domain does not reveal its possible role, its presence in both the Argonaute and Dicer protein families indicates that it might be important for the function of these proteins in RNAi and cell differentiation .
Some proteins known to contain a PAZ domain are listed below:
Proteins of the Argonaute family:
Proteins of the Dicer family:
The profile we have developed covers the entire PAZ domain.Last update:
May 2002 / First entry.
PROSITE method (with tools and information) covered by this documentation:
|1||Authors||Cerutti L., Mian N., Bateman A.|
|Title||Domains in gene silencing and cell differentiation proteins: the novel PAZ domain and redefinition of the Piwi domain.|
|Source||Trends Biochem. Sci. 25:481-482(2000).|
|2||Authors||Fagard M., Boutet S., Morel J.-B., Bellini C., Vaucheret H.|
|Title||AGO1, QDE-2, and RDE-1 are related proteins required for post-transcriptional gene silencing in plants, quelling in fungi, and RNA interference in animals.|
|Source||Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 97:11650-11654(2000).|
|3||Authors||Bernstein E., Caudy A.A., Hammond S.M., Hannon G.J.|
|Title||Role for a bidentate ribonuclease in the initiation step of RNA interference.|
|4||Authors||Hammond S.M., Caudy A.A., Hannon G.J.|
|Title||Post-transcriptional gene silencing by double-stranded RNA.|
|Source||Nat. Rev. Genet. 2:110-119(2001).|
|5||Authors||Jacobsen S.E., Running M.P., Meyerowitz E.M.|
|Title||Disruption of an RNA helicase/RNAse III gene in Arabidopsis causes unregulated cell division in floral meristems.|