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heat stress, intrinsically disordered regions, SnRK1/SNF1/AMPK, stress granules, tudor staphylococcal nuclease

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Tudor staphylococcal nuclease (TSN; also known as Tudor-SN, p100, or SND1) is a multifunctional, evolutionarily conserved regulator of gene expression, exhibiting cytoprotective activity in animals and plants and oncogenic activity in mammals. During stress, TSN stably associates with stress granules (SGs), in a poorly understood process. Here, we show that in the model plant Arabidopsis thaliana, TSN is an intrinsically disordered protein (IDP) acting as a scaffold for a large pool of other IDPs, enriched for conserved stress granule components as well as novel or plant-specific SG-localized proteins. While approximately 30% of TSN interactors are recruited to stress granules de novo upon stress perception, 70% form a protein–protein interaction network present before the onset of stress. Finally, we demonstrate that TSN and stress granule formation promote heat-induced activation of the evolutionarily conserved energy-sensing SNF1-related protein kinase 1 (SnRK1), the plant orthologue of mammalian AMP-activated protein kinase (AMPK). Our results establish TSN as a docking platform for stress granule proteins, with an important role in stress signalling.

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The EMBO Journal, v. 40, issue 17, art. e105043

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