Isolation of chinese hamster ovary ribosomal mutants differentially resistant to ricin, abrin, and modeccin

Sandra Sallustio, Pamela Stanley

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30 Scopus citations


The molecular action of ricin A chain involves cleavage of the N-glycosidic bond between ribose and the adenine 4324 nucleotides from the 5′ end of mammalian 28 S rRNA (Endo, Y., and Tsurugi, K. (1987) J. Biol. Chem. 262, 8128-8130). In this paper, four ricin- and abrin-resistant Chinese hamster ovary cell mutants that possess ribosomes resistant to this N-glycosidase action are described. Three of the mutant phenotypes, Lec26, Lec27, and Lec28, were recessive in somatic cell hybrids and define at least two new lectin-resistant complementation groups. The most extensively characterized mutant type, LEC17, was dominant in such hybrids. None of the mutants were cross-resistant to modeccin. Post-mitochondrial supernatants from each of the four mutants were resistant to inhibition of cell-free protein synthesis by ricin, ricin A chain, and abrin. In addition, polysomes isolated from mutant cells were resistant to cleavage of the adenine-ribose N-glycosidic bond by ricin A chain or abrin, as assayed by the release of an ∼470-nucleotide fragment following aniline treatment of ribosomal RNA extracted from toxin-treated polysomes. The unique lectin-resistance properties of the different mutants suggests that the accessibility of adenine 4324 to each toxin differs. It seems likely that the recessive Chinese hamster ovary ribosomal mutants reflect structural changes in different ribosomal proteins while the dominant phenotype may be due to the modification of protein(s) or rRNA involved in toxin-ribosome interaction. Further analysis of these cell lines should provide new insights into the structure/function relationships of eukaryotic ribosomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)582-588
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 5 1990

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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