Stephanie K Smith

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Argonaute proteins and small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) are the known signature components of the RNA interference effector complex RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC). However, the identity of "Slicer," the enzyme that cleaves the messenger RNA (mRNA) as directed by the siRNA, has not been resolved. Here, we report the crystal structure of the Argonaute(More)
RISC, the RNA-induced silencing complex, uses short interfering RNAs (siRNAs) or micro RNAs (miRNAs) to select its targets in a sequence-dependent manner. Key RISC components are Argonaute proteins, which contain two characteristic domains, PAZ and PIWI. PAZ is highly conserved and is found only in Argonaute proteins and Dicer. We have solved the crystal(More)
Drosophila melanogaster Polo kinase physically interacts with, and is repressed by, the Matrimony (Mtrm) protein during oogenesis. Females heterozygous for a deletion of the mtrm gene display defects in chromosome segregation at meiosis I. However, a complete absence of Mtrm results in both meiotic catastrophe and female sterility. We show that three(More)
Pheomelanin, the red-brown polymeric pigment in the skin and hair of red-headed humans, is composed of a protein fraction covalently bound to a colored chromophore. Photolysis of aerated aqueous phemelanin solutions, isolated from human red hair, results in destruction of the chromophore and liberation of the peptide fraction. The rate of photolysis depends(More)
Cell cycle progression in female meiotic systems is characterized by the presence of two or more pre-programmed arrests. One such arrest is invariable throughout all species--a lengthy G(2) arrest that separates the end of pachytene (by which homologous chromosomes have condensed, paired and undergone recombination) from nuclear envelope breakdown (NEB).(More)
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