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Using PCR cloning techniques, we have isolated a Saccharomyces cerevisiae gene encoding a protein that contains two highly conserved RNA-recognition motifs. This gene, designated RNP1, encodes an acidic protein that is similar in sequence to a variety of previously isolated RNA binding proteins, including nucleolin, poly (A) binding protein, and small nuclear ribonucleoproteins. The RNP1 gene maps to the left arm of chromosome XIV centromere distal to SUF10. Haploid yeast containing a null allele of RNP1 are viable, indicating that RNP1 is dispensible for mitotic growth. However genomic Southern blot analysis indicated that several other loci in the S. cerevisiae genome appear to contain sequences similar to those in the RNP1 gene. The majority of the Rnp1 protein is cytoplasmic. Extra copies of RNP1 cause a decrease in levels of 80S monoribosomes. A fraction of Rnp1 protein cosediments on sucrose gradients with 40S and 60S ribosomal subunits and 80S monosomes, but not with polyribosomes.