SCIENTIA SINICA Vitae, Volume 49 , Issue 9 : 1143-1154(2019) https://doi.org/10.1360/SSV-2019-0154

Research progress in structure and function of polymerase-associated factor 1 complex

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  • ReceivedJul 25, 2019
  • AcceptedAug 9, 2019
  • PublishedSep 16, 2019


Polymerase-associated factor 1 (Paf1) complex is a highly conserved multi-subunit complex in eukaryotes. Yeast Paf1 complex is composed of five subunits (Ctr9, Paf1, Leo1, Cdc73, and Rtf1), but the human Paf1 complex contains an additional subunit Ski8. The Paf1 complex was found to be involved in numerous cellular activities, such as regulating all stages of the RNA polymerase II transcription cycle, processing and nuclear export of nascent transcripts, maintenance of chromatin structure or embryonic stem cell pluripotency, DNA damage and repair, and the occurrence and development of tumors. Here, we review the important research progress of Paf1 complex in recent years from the aspects of structure and function, propose some scientific questions related to Paf1 complex that urgently need to be solved, and prospect for future research directions.

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  • Figure 1

    Structures of subunit or subcomplex of Paf1 complex. A: Rtf1-Plus3 domain (Homo sapiens, PDB: 2BZE). B: Rtf1-Spt5 subcomplex (Homo sapiens, PDB: 4L1U). C: Rtf1-HMD domain (Saccharomyces cerevisiae, PDB: 5E8B). D: Cdc73 C-terminal domain (Saccharomyces cerevisiae, PDB: 3V46). E: Cdc73 N-Terminal domain (Homo sapiens, PDB: 5YDE). F: Paf1-Leo1 subcomplex (Homo sapiens, PDB: 4M6T). G: Ctr9-Paf1 subcomplex (Saccharomyces cerevisiae, PDB: 5ZYP). H: Ctr9-Paf1 subcomplex (Homo sapiens, 5ZYQ). I: Ctr9-Paf1-Cdc73 subcomplex (Myceliophthora thermophila, PDB: 6AF0). J: Pol Ⅱ-DSIF-PAF-SPT6 (Homo sapiens and Sus scrofa, PDB: 6GMH)

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