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A Novel Component in Transcription and Processing of Plant miRNAs

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small ribo-regulators involved in almost every biological processes in eukaryotic organisms. In plants, the primary transcript of miRNAs (pri-miRNAs) are transcribed by RNA Polymerase II and subsequently processed into mature miRNAs by Dicer-like 1 (DCL1) with the aid of several cofactors including HYPONASTIC LEAVES1 (HYL1), the zinc finger protein SERRATE (SE), which concentrate in a plant–specific nuclear body known as Dicing Body or D-body.

Prof. FANG Yuda and his colleagues at Shanghai Institute of Plant Physiology and Ecology, SIBS, CAS, now identified a cycling DOF (DNA-binding with one finger) transcription factor, CDF2, which regulates miRNA levels at both transcriptional and post-transcriptional levels in Arabidopsis thaliana. CDF2 binds to the promoters of a subset of miRNAs to regulate their transcriptions. In parallel, CDF2 binds to the corresponding pri-miRNAs and affects miRNA processing by interacting with DCL1.

This study, published by PLOS Genetics on October 16th, 2015, was supported by the grants from National Natural Science Foundation of China and Ministry of Science and Technology of China.

AUTHOR CONTACT:
Yuda Fang, Principal Investigator
Institute of plant Physiology and Ecology, Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Shanghai, China
Phone: 86-21-54924296
E-mail: yfang@sibs.ac.cn


Figure 1 (A) CDF2 interacts with DCL1 and HYL1 in D-bodies; (B) CDF2 acts in the same flowering time pathway with HYL1.

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