Rna promotes phase separation of glycolysis enzymes into yeast g bodies in hypoxia

Gregory G. Fuller, Ting Han, Mallory A. Freeberg, James J. Moresco, Amirhossein Ghanbari Niaki, Nathan P. Roach, John R. Yates, Sua Myong, John K. Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

44 Scopus citations


In hypoxic stress conditions, glycolysis enzymes assemble into singular cytoplasmic granules called glycolytic (G) bodies. G body formation in yeast correlates with increased glucose consumption and cell survival. However, the physical properties and organizing principles that define G body formation are unclear. We demonstrate that glycolysis enzymes are non-canonical RNA binding proteins, sharing many common mRNA substrates that are also integral constituents of G bodies. Targeting nonspecific endoribonucleases to G bodies reveals that RNA nucleates G body formation and maintains its structural integrity. Consistent with a phase separation mechanism of biogenesis, recruitment of glycolysis enzymes to G bodies relies on multivalent homotypic and heterotypic interactions. Furthermore, G bodies fuse in vivo and are largely insensitive to 1,6-hexanediol, consistent with a hydrogel-like composition. Taken together, our results elucidate the biophysical nature of G bodies and demonstrate that RNA nucleates phase separation of the glycolysis machinery in response to hypoxic stress.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere48480
StatePublished - Apr 2020

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)


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