The Cajal (coiled) body is a discrete nuclear organelle that was first described in mammalian neurons in 1903. Because the molecular composition, structure, and function of Cajal bodies were unknown, these enigmatic structures were largely ignored for most of the last century. The Cajal body has now regained the interest of biologists, due to the isolation of a protein marker, coilin. Despite current widespread use of coilin to identify Cajal bodies in various cell types, its structure and function are still little understood. Here, I would like to discuss what we have learned about coilin and suggest a possible role for coilin in RNA processing and cellular trafficking, especially in relation to Cajal bodies and nucleoli. Although coilin has been investigated primarily in somatic cells, I will emphasize the advantages of using the amphibian oocyte to study nuclear proteins and organelles. (C) 2000 John Wiley and Sons, Inc.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||7|
|State||Published - Sep 20 2000|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)