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The role of miRNA in somatic embryogenesis

Siddiqui, Zahid Hameed, Abbas, Zahid Khorshid, Ansari, Mohammad Wahid, Khan, Mohammad Nasir
Genomics 2018
abiotic stress, biotic stress, in vitro studies, messenger RNA, metabolism, microRNA, nucleotides, plant development, plant hormones, proteins, regulator genes, secondary metabolites, signal transduction, somatic cells, somatic embryogenesis, somatic embryos, stress response, totipotency, zygote
Somatic embryogenesis (SEG) is one of the best techniques for mass production of economically important plants. It is also used for the study of morphology, anatomy, physiology, genetics and molecular mechanism of embryo development. Somatic Embryos (SE) are bipolar structures that develop from a cell other than a gamete or zygote. SEG reflects the unique developmental potential of plant somatic cells, resulting in the transition of the differentiated somatic cells to embryogenic cells to follow the zygotic embryo stages. There are several biochemical and physiological processes that transformed a single somatic cell to a whole plant. SE studies provide insight into cell mechanisms governing the totipotency process in plants. Previously, in vitro studies have suggested the role of various regulatory genes in embryogenic transition that are triggered by plant hormones in response to stress. The omic studies identify the specific genes, transcripts, and proteins required for somatic embryogenesis development. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small, 19–24 nucleotides (nt), non-coding small RNA regulatory molecules controlling a large number of biological processes. In addition to their role in SEG, miRNAs play vital role in plant development, secondary metabolite synthesis and metabolism of macromolecules, hormone signal transduction, and tolerance of plants to biotic and abiotic stresses. During last decade several types of miRNAs involved in SEG have been reported. Among these miRNAs, miR156, miR162, miR166a, miR167, miR168, miR171a/b, miR171c, miR393, miR397 and miR398 played very active role during various stages of SEG. In this review, we highlighted the role of these as well as other miRNAs in some economically important plants.