|June 2018 Research Update
Post-transcriptional Gene Silencing Goes Nuclear
Recently, researchers in France identified a novel protein that controls post-transcriptional gene silencing. Their finding is significant because it is the first-time post-transcriptional silencing has included nucleoplasmic mechanisms.
The researchers stumbled upon this finding while trying to understand how microRNA (miRNA) targets and modulates RNA degradation.
Traditional methods to identify miRNA binding sites have been shown to produce approximately 70% false or negative targets, so Bottini and colleagues decided to circumvent this problem by identifying RNA binding proteins that bind to messenger RNAs (mRNAs) to control miRNA targeting.
"In support of this mechanism, it has been shown that some RNA-binding proteins associate with specific mRNAs and interfere with specific miRNA-binding sites to either inhibit or enhance miRNA targeting. This result leads to the concept of a sequence microenvironment surrounding miRNA-binding sites that plays an important role in regulating miRNA activity," the authors explain...