The RGG motif proteins: Interactions, functions, and regulations

Mashiat N. Chowdhury, Hong Jin

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


Proteins with motifs rich in arginines and glycines were discovered decades ago and are functionally involved in a staggering range of essential processes in the cell. Versatile, specific, yet adaptable molecular interactions enabled by the unique combination of arginine and glycine, combined with multiplicity of molecular recognition conferred by repeated di-, tri-, and multiple peptide motifs, allow RGG motif proteins to interact with a broad range of proteins and nucleic acids. Furthermore, posttranslational modifications at the arginines in the motif extend the RGG protein's capacity for a fine-tuned regulation. In this review, we focus on the biochemical properties of the RGG motif, its molecular interactions with RNAs and proteins, and roles of the posttranslational modification in modulating their interactions. We discuss current knowledge of the RGG motif proteins involved in mRNA transport and translation, highlight our merging understanding of their molecular functions in translational regulation and summarize areas of research in the future critical in understanding this important family of proteins. This article is categorized under: RNA Interactions with Proteins and Other Molecules > Protein-RNA Recognition RNA Interactions with Proteins and Other Molecules > Protein-RNA Interactions: Functional Implications Translation > Mechanisms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere1748
JournalWiley Interdisciplinary Reviews: RNA
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2023


  • RGG/RG motif
  • RNA-binding proteins
  • arginine-glycine-glycine/arginine-glycine motif
  • mRNA transport
  • translation/protein biosynthesis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Biochemistry

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