RNA degradation is important in the post-transcriptional control of gene expression. The processing, degradation and quality control of RNA is performed by many different classes of ribonucleases. Ribonuclease II (RNase II) is a 643-amino-acid enzyme that degrades single-stranded RNA from its 3′-end, releasing ribonucleoside 5′-monophosphates. RNase II was expressed both as the wild type and as a D209N mutant form. The latter was also produced as an SeMet derivative. The various protein forms were crystallized using the vapour-diffusion method. Wild-type RNase II was crystallized in two crystal forms, both of which belonged to space group P21. X-ray diffraction data were collected to 2.44 and 2.75 Å resolution, with unit-cell parameters a = 56.8, b = 125.7, c = 66.2 Å, β = 111.9° and a = 119.6, b = 57.2, c = 121.2 Å, β = 99.7°, respectively. The RNase II D209N mutant gave crystals that belonged to space group P65, with unit-cell parameters a = b = 86.3, c = 279.2 Å, and diffracted to 2.74 Å. Diffraction data from the mutant and its SeMet derivative enabled the determination of a partial Se-atom substructure by SIRAS.
Keywords: RNase II, RNA degradation