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A conserved regulatory role for antisense RNA in meiotic gene expression in yeast
- Chen, Huei-Mei, Neiman, Aaron M
- Current opinion in microbiology 2011 v.14 no.6 pp. 655-659
- RNA interference, antisense RNA, gene expression, genome, meiosis, messenger RNA, non-coding RNA, proteins, transcription (genetics), vegetative cells, vegetative growth, yeasts
- A significant fraction of the eukaryotic genome is transcribed into RNAs that do not encode proteins, termed non-coding RNA (ncRNA). One class of ncRNA that is of particular interest is antisense RNAs, which are complementary to protein coding transcripts (mRNAs). In this article, we summarize recent studies using different yeasts that reveal a conserved pattern in which meiotically expressed genes have antisense transcripts in vegetative cells. These antisense transcripts repress the basal transcription of the mRNA during vegetative growth and are diminished as cells enter meiosis. While the mechanism(s) by which these antisense RNAs interfere with production of sense transcripts is not yet understood, the effects appear to be independent of the canonical RNAi machinery.