A variety of peptides can mediate the localization of proteins to the nucleus. We have identified yeast proteins of 70 and 59 kD that bind to nuclear localization peptides of SV-40 T antigen, Xenopus nucleoplasmin, and the yeast proteins Ga14 and histone H2B. These proteins are assayed by the binding of peptide-albumin conjugates to proteins immobilized on nitrocellulose filters. These binding proteins fractionate with nuclei and are extractable with salt but not detergent. Radiolabeled peptide-albumin conjugates also bind to isolated nuclei; the binding is saturable and can be extracted with salt. Different nuclear localization peptides compete with each other, implying that a single class of proteins is responsible for their recognition. The 70- and 59-kD proteins have the properties expected for a receptor that would act to direct proteins to the nucleus.

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