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Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA

John G Conboy
The Rbfox genes encode an ancient family of sequence-specific RNA binding proteins (RBPs) that are critical developmental regulators in multiple tissues including skeletal muscle, cardiac muscle, and brain. The hallmark of Rbfox proteins is a single high-affinity RRM domain, highly conserved from insects to humans, that binds preferentially to UGCAUG motifs at diverse regulatory sites in pre-mRNA introns, mRNA 3'UTRs, and pre-miRNAs hairpin structures. Versatile regulatory circuits operate on Rbfox pre-mRNA and mRNA to ensure proper expression of Rbfox1 protein isoforms, which then act on the broader transcriptome to regulate alternative splicing networks, mRNA stability and translation, and microRNA processing...
October 17, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Jun-Yao Wang, Lan Xiao, Jian-Ying Wang
Maintenance of the gut epithelial integrity under stressful environments requires epithelial cells to rapidly elicit changes in gene expression patterns to regulate their survival, adapt to stress, and keep epithelial homeostasis. Disruption of the intestinal epithelial integrity occurs commonly in patients with various critical illnesses, leading to the translocation of luminal toxic substances and bacteria to the blood stream. Recently, noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) have emerged as a novel class of master regulators of gene expression and are fundamentally involved in many aspects of gut mucosal regeneration, protection, and epithelial barrier function...
October 4, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Sweta Vangaveti, Srivathsan V Ranganathan, Alan A Chen
Molecular simulations have become an essential tool for biochemical research. When they work properly, they are able to provide invaluable interpretations of experimental results and ultimately provide novel, experimentally testable predictions. Unfortunately, not all simulation models are created equal, and with inaccurate models it becomes unclear what is a bona fide prediction versus a simulation artifact. RNA models are still in their infancy compared to the many robust protein models that are widely in use, and for that reason the number of RNA force field revisions in recent years has been rapidly increasing...
October 4, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Michele Felletti, Jörg S Hartig
The discovery of catalytic RNA (ribozymes) more than 30 years ago significantly widened the horizon of RNA-based functions in natural systems. Similarly to the activity of protein enzymes that are often modulated by the presence of an interaction partner, some examples of naturally occurring ribozymes are influenced by ligands that can either act as cofactors or allosteric modulators. Recent discoveries of new and widespread ribozyme motifs in many different genetic contexts point toward the existence of further ligand-dependent RNA catalysts...
September 30, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Mark R Cookson
Gene expression is regulated at many levels, including after generation of the primary RNA transcript from DNA but before translation into protein. Such post-translational gene regulation occurs via the action of a multitude of RNA binding proteins and include varied actions from splicing to regulation of association with the translational machinery. Primary evidence that such processes might contribute to disease mechanisms in neurodegenerative disorders comes from the observation of mutations in RNA binding proteins, particularly in diseases in the amyotrophic lateral sclerosis-frontotemporal dementia spectrum and in some forms of ataxia and tremor...
September 23, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Laura De Conti, Marco Baralle, Emanuele Buratti
In the eukaryotic nucleus, RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) play a very important role in the life cycle of both coding and noncoding RNAs. As soon as they are transcribed, in fact, all RNA molecules within a cell are bound by distinct sets of RBPs that have the task of regulating its correct processing, transport, stability, and function/translation up to its final degradation. These tasks are particularly important in cells that have a complex RNA metabolism, such as neurons. Not surprisingly, therefore, recent findings have shown that the misregulation of genes involved in RNA metabolism or the autophagy/proteasome pathway plays an important role in the onset and progression of several neurodegenerative diseases...
September 22, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Elizabeth J F White, Aerielle E Matsangos, Gerald M Wilson
AUF1 is a family of four RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) generated by alternative pre-messenger RNA (pre-mRNA) splicing, with canonical roles in controlling the stability and/or translation of mRNA targets based on recognition of AU-rich sequences within mRNA 3' untranslated regions. However, recent studies identifying AUF1 target sites across the transcriptome have revealed that these canonical functions are but a subset of its roles in posttranscriptional regulation of gene expression. In this review, we describe recent developments in our understanding of the RNA-binding properties of AUF1 together with their biochemical implications and roles in directing mRNA decay and translation...
September 13, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Amaresh C Panda, Ioannis Grammatikakis, Rachel Munk, Myriam Gorospe, Kotb Abdelmohsen
Circular RNAs (circRNAs) represent a large class of noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs) that have recently emerged as regulators of gene expression. They have been shown to suppress microRNAs, thereby increasing the translation and stability of the targets of such microRNAs. In this review, we discuss the emerging functions of circRNAs, including RNA transcription, splicing, turnover, and translation. We also discuss other possible facets of circRNAs that can influence their function depending on the cell context, such as circRNA abundance, subcellular localization, interacting partners (RNA, DNA, and proteins), dynamic changes in interactions following stimulation, and potential circRNA translation...
September 9, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Douglas F Dluzen, Nicole Noren Hooten, Michele K Evans
Since the discovery of extracellular RNA (exRNA) in circulation and other bodily fluids, there has been considerable effort to catalog and assess whether exRNAs can be used as markers for health and disease. A variety of exRNA species have been identified including messenger RNA and noncoding RNA such as microRNA (miRNA), small nucleolar RNA, transfer RNA, and long noncoding RNA. Age-related changes in exRNA abundance have been observed, and it is likely that some of these transcripts play a role in aging. In this review, we summarize the current state of exRNA profiling in various body fluids and discuss age-related changes in exRNA abundance that have been identified in humans and other model organisms...
August 17, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Saori Tomita, Mohamed Osama Ali Abdalla, Saori Fujiwara, Tatsuro Yamamoto, Hirotaka Iwase, Mitsuyoshi Nakao, Noriko Saitoh
The cell nucleus is highly organized and functionally compartmentalized. Double-stranded naked DNA is complexed with core histones and assembled into nucleosomes and chromatin, which are surrounded by nuclear domains composed of RNAs and proteins. Recently, three-dimensional views of chromosome organization beyond the level of the nucleosome have been established and are composed of several layers of chromosome domains. Only a small portion of the human genome encodes proteins; the majority is pervasively transcribed into noncoding RNAs whose functions are under intensive investigation...
August 3, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Ruth Sperling
The complex life of pre-mRNA from transcription to the production of mRNA that can be exported from the nucleus to the cytoplasm to encode for proteins entails intricate coordination and regulation of a network of processing events. Coordination is required between transcription and splicing and between several processing events including 5' and 3' end processing, splicing, alternative splicing and editing that are major contributors to the diversity of the human proteome, and occur within a huge and dynamic macromolecular machine-the endogenous spliceosome...
July 27, 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Domenica Marchese, Natalia Sanchez de Groot, Nieves Lorenzo Gotor, Carmen Maria Livi, Gian G Tartaglia
From transcription, to transport, storage, and translation, RNA depends on association with different RNA-binding proteins (RBPs). Methods based on next-generation sequencing and protein mass-spectrometry have started to unveil genome-wide interactions of RBPs but many aspects still remain out of sight. How many of the binding sites identified in high-throughput screenings are functional? A number of computational methods have been developed to analyze experimental data and to obtain insights into the specificity of protein-RNA interactions...
November 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Elena V Dolgosheina, Peter J Unrau
Why image RNA? Of all the biological molecules, RNA exhibits the most diverse range of functions. Evidence suggests that transcription produces a wide range of noncoding RNAs (ncRNAs), both short (e.g., siRNAs, miRNAs) and long (e.g., telomeric RNAs) that regulate many aspects of gene expression, including the epigenetic processes that underlie cell fate determination, polarization, and morphogenesis. All these functions are realized through the exquisite temporal and spatial control of RNA expression levels and the stability of specific RNAs within well-defined sub-cellular compartments...
November 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Shailesh Kumar, Sundus Khalid Razzaq, Angie Duy Vo, Mamta Gautam, Hui Li
Fusion transcripts (i.e., chimeric RNAs) resulting from gene fusions have been used successfully for cancer diagnosis, prognosis, and therapeutic applications. In addition, many fusion transcripts are found in normal human cell lines and tissues, with some data supporting their role in normal physiology. Besides chromosomal rearrangement, intergenic splicing can generate them. Global identification of fusion transcripts becomes possible with the help of next generation sequencing technology like RNA-Seq. In the past decade, major advancements have been made for chimeric RNA discovery due to the development of advanced sequencing platform and software packages...
November 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Wengong Wang
Methylation is a prevalent post-transcriptional modification that occurs in almost all RNA species. NSUN2, a nucleolar RNA methyltransferase, has been shown to methylate mRNAs encoding factors that control cell division and growth arrest, thereby affecting their stability and/or translation. Here, the author summarizes the recent progress in understanding NSUN2-mediated mRNA methylation and its implications in cell proliferation and senescence. WIREs RNA 2016, 7:838-842. doi: 10.1002/wrna.1380 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website...
November 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Alexander C DeHaven, Ian S Norden, Aaron A Hoskins
The process of removing intronic sequences from a precursor to messenger RNA (pre-mRNA) to yield a mature mRNA transcript via splicing is an integral step in eukaryotic gene expression. Splicing is carried out by a cellular nanomachine called the spliceosome that is composed of RNA components and dozens of proteins. Despite decades of study, many fundamentals of spliceosome function have remained elusive. Recent developments in single-molecule fluorescence microscopy have afforded new tools to better probe the spliceosome and the complex, dynamic process of splicing by direct observation of single molecules...
September 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Kotaro Nakanishi
RNA silencing is a eukaryote-specific phenomenon in which microRNAs and small interfering RNAs degrade messenger RNAs containing a complementary sequence. To this end, these small RNAs need to be loaded onto an Argonaute protein (AGO protein) to form the effector complex referred to as RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC). RISC assembly undergoes multiple and sequential steps with the aid of Hsc70/Hsp90 chaperone machinery. The molecular mechanisms for this assembly process remain unclear, despite their significance for the development of gene silencing techniques and RNA interference-based therapeutics...
September 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Giulia Furlan, Claire Rougeulle
X-chromosome inactivation (XCI) is a chromosome-wide regulatory process that ensures dosage compensation for X-linked genes in Theria. XCI is established during early embryogenesis and is developmentally regulated. Different XCI strategies exist in mammalian infraclasses and the regulation of this process varies also among closely related species. In Eutheria, initiation of XCI is orchestrated by a cis-acting locus, the X-inactivation center (Xic), which is particularly enriched in genes producing long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs)...
September 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Evangelos D Karousis, Sofia Nasif, Oliver Mühlemann
Nonsense-mediated mRNA decay (NMD) was originally coined to define a quality control mechanism that targets mRNAs with truncated open reading frames due to the presence of a premature termination codon. Meanwhile, it became clear that NMD has a much broader impact on gene expression and additional biological functions beyond quality control are continuously being discovered. We review here the current views regarding the molecular mechanisms of NMD, according to which NMD ensues on mRNAs that fail to terminate translation properly, and point out the gaps in our understanding...
September 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
Jekaterina Vohhodina, D Paul Harkin, Kienan I Savage
Despite consistent research into the molecular principles of the DNA damage repair pathway for almost two decades, it has only recently been found that RNA metabolism is very tightly related to this pathway, and the two ancient biochemical mechanisms act in alliance to maintain cellular genomic integrity. The close links between these pathways are well exemplified by examining the base excision repair pathway, which is now well known for dual roles of many of its members in DNA repair and RNA surveillance, including APE1, SMUG1, and PARP1...
September 2016: Wiley Interdisciplinary Reviews. RNA
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