2-Methylthio-N6-isopentenyl modification of adenosine (ms2i6A) is an evolutionally conserved modification that is found in transfer RNAs (tRNAs). We have recently shown that Cdk5 regulatory subunitassociated protein 1 (Cdk5rap1) specifically converts i6A to ms2i6A at position A37 of four mitochondrial DNA-encoded tRNAs, and that the modification regulates efficient mitochondrial translation and energy metabolism in mammals. Curiously, a previous study reported that ms2i6A is present abundantly in nuclear-derived RNA species such as microRNAs, but not in tRNA fractions. To fully understand the molecular property of ms2i6A, the existence of noncanonical ms2i6A must be carefully validated. In the present study, we examined ms2i6A in total RNA purified from human and murine-0 cells, in which mitochondrial DNA-derived tRNAs were completely depleted. The ms2i6A was not detected in these cells at all. We generated a monoclonal antibody against ms2i6A and examined ms2i6A in murine RNAs using the antibody. The anti-ms2i6A antibody only reacted with the tRNA fractions and not in other RNA species. Furthermore, immunocytochemistry analysis using the antibody showed the predominant localization of ms2i6A in mitochondria and co-localization with the mitochondrial elongation factor Tu. Taken together, we propose that ms2i6A is a mitochondrial tRNAspecific modification and is absent from nuclearencoded RNA species.
ASJC Scopus subject areas