MS2 Labeling of Endogenous Beta-Actin mRNA Does Not Result in Stabilization of Degradation Intermediates

Songhee H. Kim, Melissa Vieira, Hye Jin Kim, Mahipal Singh Kesawat, Hye Yoon Park

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations


The binding of MS2 bacteriophage coat protein (MCP) to MS2 binding site (MBS) RNA stem-loop sequences has been widely used to label mRNA for live-cell imaging at single-molecule resolution. However, concerns have been raised recently from studies with budding yeast showing aberrant mRNA metabolism following the MS2-GFP labeling. To inves-tigate the degradation pattern of MS2-GFP-labeled mRNA in mammalian cells and tissues, we used Northern blot analysis of β-actin mRNA extracted from the Actb-MBS knock-in and MBS×MCP hybrid mouse models. In the immortalized mouse embryonic cell lines and various organ tissues derived from the mouse models, we found no noticeable accumulation of decay products of β-actin mRNA compared with the wild-type mice. Our results suggest that accumulation of MBS RNA decay fragments does not always happen depending on the mRNA species and the model organisms used.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)356-362
Number of pages7
JournalMolecules and cells
Issue number4
StatePublished - 2019
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Creative-Pioneering Researchers Program through Seoul National University and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI)-Wellcome International Scholar Awards from the Wellcome Trust [208468/Z/17/Z].

Publisher Copyright:
© The Korean Society for Molecular and Cellular Biology.


  • MS2-GFP system
  • Northern blot
  • mouse
  • single RNA imaging
  • β-actin mRNA


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