Title: Evidence for co-evolution between human microRNAs and Alu-repeats
Authors: Lehnert, Stefan ×
Van Loo, Peter
Thilakarathne, Pushpike Jayantha
Marynen, Peter
Verbeke, Geert
Schuit, Frans #
Issue Date: 2009
Publisher: Public Library of Sciene
Series Title: PLoS One vol:4 issue:2 pages:e4456
Abstract: This paper connects Alu repeats, the most abundant repetitive elements in the human genome and microRNAs, small RNAs that alter gene expression at the post-transcriptional level. Base-pair complementarity could be demonstrated between the seed sequence of a subset of human microRNAs and Alu repeats that are integrated parallel (sense) in mRNAs. The most common target site coincides with the evolutionary most conserved part of Alu. A primate-specific gene cluster on chromosome 19 encodes the majority of miRNAs that target the most conserved sense Alu site. The individual miRNA genes within this cluster are flanked by an Alu-LINE signature, which has been duplicated with the clustered miRNA genes. Gene duplication events in this locus are supported by comparing repeat length variations of the LINE elements within the cluster with those in the rest of the chromosome. Thus, a dual relationship exists between an evolutionary young miRNA cluster and their Alu targets that may have evolved in the same time window. One hypothesis for this dual relationship is that these miRNAs could protect against too high rates of duplicative transposition, which would destroy the genome.
ISSN: 1932-6203
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Gene Expression Unit
Leuven Biostatistics and Statistical Bioinformatics Centre (L-BioStat)
Human Genome Laboratory
Laboratory for Cytogenetics and Genome Research
Department of Human Genetics - miscellaneous
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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