Mitotic regulator protein RCC1 is complexed with a nuclear ras-related polypeptide.
We previously reported the purification of a complex of two proteins from human chromatin, consisting of a 47-kDa component called RCC1, which is a negative regulator of mitosis, and a 25-kDa protein. Here we show that the 25-kDa protein has a ras-related sequence. It binds guanine nucleotides, and excess Mg2+ and GDP or GTP dissociate the complex. Immunofluorescence studies and biochemical properties indicate that this polypeptide, in contrast to most members of the Ras family, is present in the nucleoplasm as a soluble monomer, in 25-fold excess over the complexed form. We designate this polypeptide Ran, for ras-related nuclear protein.