Sep 14, 2013

The evolution of microRNA pathway protein components in Cnidaria

Molecular Biology and Evolution
Yehu MoranUlrich Technau

Abstract

In the last decade, it became evident that posttranscriptional regulation of gene expression by microRNAs is a central biological process in both plants and animals. Yet, our knowledge about microRNA biogenesis and utilization in animals stems mostly from the study of Bilateria. In this study, we identified genes encoding the protein components of different parts of the microRNA pathway in Cnidaria, the likely sister phylum of Bilateria. These genes originated from three cnidarian lineages (sea anemones, stony corals, and hydras) that are separated by at least 500 My from one another. We studied the expression and phylogeny of the cnidarian homologs of Drosha and Pasha (DGCR8) that compose the microprocessor, the RNAse III enzyme Dicer and its partners, the HEN1 methyltransferase, the Argonaute protein effectors, as well as members of the GW182 protein family. We further reveal that whereas the bilaterian dicer partners Loquacious/TRBP and PACT are absent from Cnidaria, this phylum contains homologs of the double-stranded RNA-binding protein HYL1, the Dicer partner found in plants. We also identified HYL1 homologs in a sponge and a ctenophore. This finding raises questions regarding the independent evolution of the microRNA pat...Continue Reading

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  • Citations26

References

Mentioned in this Paper

Biochemical Pathway
NCOA6 wt Allele
Protein Family
Argonaute Proteins
PIWI Subfamily of Argonaute Proteins
RBBP6 gene
Hydra Polyps
Order Scleractinia
RNA, Small Temporal
Papillary Thyroid Carcinoma

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