Genetic interference by double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) or RNA interference (RNAi) triggers the sequence-specific degradation of cellular transcripts. The mediators of mRNA degradation are small interfering RNAs (siRNAs). Here, we report that in Trypanosoma brucei, 10%-20% of siRNAs cosediment with polyribosomes. Preventing the assembly of ribosomes on mRNAs results in a concomitant decrease of siRNAs sedimenting as high-molecular-weight complexes. We further provide evidence that siRNAs are associated with translating ribosomes and that this association is mediated by a 70-kD ribonucleoprotein complex.
- siRNAs, polyribosomes
- Trypanosoma brucei