The subcellular location of several nonribosomal nucleolar proteins was examined at various stages of mitosis in synchronized mammalian cell lines including HeLa, 3T3, COS-7 and HIV-1 Rev-expressing CMT3 cells, Nucleolar proteins B23, fibrillarin, nucleolin and p52 as well as U3 snoRNA were located partially in the peripheral regions of chromosomes from prometaphase to early telophase. However, these proteins were also found in large cytoplasmic particles, 1-2 μm in diameter, termed nucleolus-derived foci (NDF). The NDF reached maximum numbers (as many as 100 per cell) during mid- to late anaphase, after which their number declined to a few or none during late telophase. The decline in the number of NDF approximately coincided with the appearance of prenucleolar bodies and reforming nucleoli. The HIV-1 Rev protein and a mutant Rev protein defective in its nuclear export signal were also found in the NDF. The mutant Rev protein precisely followed the pattern of localization of the above nucleolar proteins, whereas the wild-type Rev did not enter nuclei until G1 phase. The nucleolar shuttling phosphoprotein Nopp 140 did not follow the above pattern of localization during mitosis: it dispersed in the cytoplasm from prometaphase through early telophase and was not found in the NDF. Although the NDF and mitotic coiled bodies disappeared from the cytoplasm at approximately the same time during mitosis, protein B23 was not found in mitotic coiled bodies, nor was p80 coilin present in the NDF. These results suggest that a class of proteins involved in preribosomal RNA processing associate with chromosome periphery and with NDF as part of a system to conserve and deliver preexisting components to reforming nucleoli during mitosis.
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