Cytoplasmic ribosomes, organelles that catalyze protein synthesis, consist of a small 40S subunit and a large 60S;subunit. Together these subunits are composed of 4 RNA species and approximately 80 structurally distinct proteins.;This gene encodes a ribosomal protein that is a component of the 60S subunit. The protein, which shares sequence;similarity with yeast ribosomal protein L44, belongs to the L44E (L36AE) family of ribosomal proteins. Although this;gene has been referred to as ribosomal protein L44 (RPL44), its official name is ribosomal protein L36a (RPL36A). This;gene and the human gene officially named ribosomal protein L36a-like (RPL36AL) encode nearly identical proteins;;however, they are distinct genes. As is typical for genes encoding ribosomal proteins, there are multiple processed;pseudogenes of this gene dispersed through the genome. Naturally occurring read-through transcription occurs between;this locus and the heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein H2 (H) gene.