Skip to main content

To the Academician Alexander Spirin 90th Anniversary from Informosomes to the World of mRNP


The main stages and achievements in the investigation of the fate of mRNA in eukaryotic cells, which began half a century ago with the discovery of informosomes by A.S. Spirin, there are discussed. The results of even the most recent studies confirm Spirin’s hypotheses about the structure and function of the informosomes, now called mRNPs. In the bibliography, we present only small part of the published articles in this field. The full list is too large.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.


  1. 1

    Belitsina, N.V., Aitkhozhin, M.A., Gavrilova, L.P., and Spirin, AS., The messenger ribonucleic acids of differentiating animal cells, Biokhimia, 1964, vol. 29, pp. 363–374.

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  2. 2

    Spirin, A.S., Belitsina, N.V., and Aitkhozhin, M.A., Informational RNA in early embryogenesis, Zh. Obshch. Biol., 1964, vol. 25, pp. 321–338.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  3. 3

    Spirin, A.S. and Nemer, M., Messenger RNA in early sea urchin embryos; cytoplasmic particles, Science, 1965, vol. 150, pp. 214–217.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  4. 4

    Spirin, A.S., The Second Sir Hans Krebs Lecture, Informosomes, Eur. J. Biochem., 1969, vol. 10, pp. 20–35.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  5. 5

    Spirin, A.S., Belitsina, N.V., and Lerman, M.I., Use of formaldehyde fixation for studies of ribonucleoprotein particles by caesium chloride density-gradient centrifugation, J. Mol. Biol., 1965, vol. 14, pp. 611–615.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  6. 6

    Neifakh, A.A., Comparative radiation study of the morphogenetic function of nuclei in the development of animals, Zh. Obshch. Biol., 1961, vol. 22, pp. 42–57.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  7. 7

    Spirin, A.S., “Masked” forms of mRNA, Curr. Top. Dev. Biol., 1966, vol. 1, pp. 1–38.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  8. 8

    Spirin, A.S., Storage of messenger RNA in eukaryotes: envelopment with protein, translational barrier at 5' side, or conformational masking by 3' side?, Mol. Rep. Dev., 1994, vol. 38, pp. 107–117.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  9. 9

    Voronina, A.S., The size of RNA within the composition of heavy informosomes from loach embryo cytoplasm, Biochemistry (Moscow), 1985, vol. 50, pp. 1300–1304.

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  10. 10

    Ovchinnikov, L.P., Voronina, A.S., Stepanov, A.S., Belitsina, N.V., and Spirin, A.S., Informosome-like complexes formed after the addition of RNA to homogenates of animal cells, Mol. Biol., 1968, vol. 2, pp. 601–609.

    Google Scholar 

  11. 11

    Stepanov, A.S., Voronina, A.S., Ovchinnikov, L.P., and Spirin, A.S., RNA-binding protein factor of animal cell extracts, FEBS Lett., 1971, vol. 18, pp. 13–18.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  12. 12

    Stepanov, A.S. and Voronina, A.S., Formation of stabilized informosome-like particles at physiological temperatures, Dokl. Akad. Nauk SSSR, 1972, vol. 203, pp. 1418–1421.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  13. 13

    Elizarov, S.M., Stepanov, A.S., Felgenhauer, P.E., and Chulitskaya, E.V., Involvement of RNA binding proteins in the formation of informosomes in vivo, FEBS Lett., 1978, vol. 93, pp. 219–224.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  14. 14

    Kafatos, F.C., Cytoplasmic particles carrying rapidly labeled RNA in developing insect epidermis, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A., 1968, vol. 59, pp. 1251–1258.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  15. 15

    Ajtkhozhin, M.A., Doschanov, Kh.J., and Akhanov, A.U., Informosomes as a stored form of mRNA in wheat embryos, FEBS Lett., 1976, vol. 66, pp. 124–126.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  16. 16

    Preobrazhensky, A.A. and Spirin, A.S., Informosomes and their protein components: the present state of knowledge, Progr. Nucl. Acids Res. Mol. Biol., 1978, vol. 21, pp. 1–138.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  17. 17

    Belitsina, N.V., Ovchinnikov, L.P., Spirin, A.S., et al., Informosomes of HeLa cells infected with vaccinia virus, Biokhimiya, 1968, vol. 33, pp. 727–735.

    Google Scholar 

  18. 18

    Zaslavsky, V.G., Zaides, V.M., Volkova, M.Y., et al., Virus-specific informosome components in the extracts of Newcastle disease virus infected cells, FEBS Lett., 1971, vol. 14, pp. 133–136.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  19. 19

    Samarina, O.P., Krichevskaya, A.A., and Georgiev, G.P., Nuclear ribonucleoprotein particles containing messenger ribonucleic acid, Nature, 1966, vol. 25, pp. 1319–1322.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  20. 20

    Voronina, A.S., RNA-binding protein factor in the nuclear extract of rat liver cells, FEBS Lett., 1973, vol. 32, pp. 310–312.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  21. 21

    Pederson, T., Proteins associated with heterogeneous nuclear RNA in eukaryotic cells, J. Mol. Biol., 1974, vol. 83, pp. 163–183.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  22. 22

    Björk, P. and Wieslander, L., Integration of mRNP formation and export, Cell. Mol. Life Sci., 2017, vol. 74, pp. 2875–2897.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  23. 23

    Perry, R.P. and Kelly, D.E., Messenger RNA–protein complexes and newly synthesized ribosomal subunits: analysis of free particles and components of polyribosomes, J. Mol. Biol., 1968, vol. 35, pp. 37–59.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  24. 24

    Henshaw, E.C., Messenger RNA in rat liver polyribosomes: evidence that it exists as ribonucleoprotein particles, J. Mol. Biol., 1968, vol. 36, pp. 401–411.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  25. 25

    Blobel, G., A protein of molecular weight 78.000 bound to the polyadenylate region of eukaryotic messenger RNAs, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U. S. A., 1973, vol. 70, pp. 924–928.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  26. 26

    Spirin, A.S., Eukaryotic messenger RNA and informosomes: omnia mea mecum porto, FEBS Lett., 1978, vol. 88, pp. 115–117.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  27. 27

    Auerbach, S. and Pederson, T., Phosphorylation of messenger RNA-bound proteins in HeLa cells, Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun., 1975, vol. 63, pp. 149–156.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  28. 28

    Stepanov, A.S., Kandror, K.V., and Elizarov, S.M., Protein kinase activity in RNA-binding proteins of amphibia oocytes, FEBS Lett., 1982, vol. 141, pp. 157–160.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  29. 29

    Stepanov, A.S. and Kandror, K.V., The effect of self-phosphorylation of RNA-binding proteins on their RNA-binding activity, Dokl. Akad. Nauk SSSR, 1984, vol. 275, pp. 1227–1230.

    CAS  PubMed  Google Scholar 

  30. 30

    Minikh, V.B. and Ovshinnikov, L.P., Role of cytoplasmic mRNP proteins in translation, Biochemistry (Moscow), 1992, vol. 74, pp. 477–483.

    Article  Google Scholar 

  31. 31

    Mordovkina, D., Lyabin, D.N., Smolin, E.A., et al., Y-box binding proteins in mRNP assembly, translation, and stability control, Biomolecules, 2020, vol. 10, p. 591.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  32. 32

    Voronina, A.S. and Potekhina, E.S., Translational regulation of synthesis of proteins responsible for dorsoventral differentiation of Xenopus laevis embryos, Russ. J. Dev. Biol., 1999, vol. 30, pp. 65–71.

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  33. 33

    Voronina, A.S. and Pshennikova, E.S., Activity of specific mRNAs in early development of Xenopus and Rana embryos, J. Biol. Sci., 2006, vol. 6, pp. 115–120.

    CAS  Google Scholar 

  34. 34

    Voronina, A.S. and Pshennikova, E.S., mRNPs: from informosomes to stress granules, Mol. Biol. (Moscow), 2010, vol. 44, no. 4, pp. 520–528.

    CAS  Article  Google Scholar 

  35. 35

    Quattrone, A. and Dassi, E., The architecture of the human RNA-binding protein regulatory network, Science, 2019, vol. 21, pp. 706–719.

  36. 36

    Eichler, C.E., Hakes, A.C., Hull, B., and Gavis, E.R., Compartmentalized oskar degradation in the germ plasm safeguards germline development, Life, 2020, vol. 9, p. 49988.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information



Corresponding author

Correspondence to A. S. Voronina.

Ethics declarations

The authors declare no conflicts of interest. This article does not contain any research involving humans or the use of animals as objects.

Additional information

Translated by M. Batrukova

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this article

Voronina, A.S., Pshennikova, E.S. To the Academician Alexander Spirin 90th Anniversary from Informosomes to the World of mRNP. Dokl Biochem Biophys 499, 203–206 (2021).

Download citation


  • mRNA
  • RNA-binding proteins
  • heavy informosomes
  • translation regulation