microRNA and control of proteins

MicroRNAs ( m1RNAs) are RNA sequences some 23 nucleotides long. They are crucial to gene expression. As part pf a RNA-protein complexes they form complementary bas pairs with their target complementary RNA sequences. These influence mRNA degradation and repress the translation of the mRNA into protein. Individual micro RNA sequences can suppress the production of hundreds of proteins, the effect is subtle and modest but very important in the fine tuning of protein synthesis. An important route whereby miRNA interact with the target mRNAs is through “seed sites”. These are specific short sequences in both miRNA and the corresponding sequence in the mRNA.
Selbach et al have shown many of these control systems in a recent paper in Nature. Does this matter to a nutritionist. First it is important biology and somewhere in her food must have a role
Selbach et al Nature 2008 Widespread changes in protein synthesis induced by microRNAs vol 455 pp 58-63
Baek et al Nature 2008 The impact of microRNAs on protein output vol 455 pp 64-71
Mourelatos Z Nature 2008 The seeds of silence vol 455 pp 44-45

Martin Eastwood
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