MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNAs that play vital roles in plant abiotic stress responses via cleavage or translational inhibition of their target mRNAs. Populus euphratica is a typical stress-resistant sessile organism that grows in desert areas. Here, we identified sequences of 12 miRNA precursors from 11 families and 13 mature miRNAs from 12 families by PCR amplification in P. euphratica . To detect expression differences in mature miRNAs and their precursors under dehydration and high salinity shock in P. euphratica , we examined 14 miRNA precursors from 13 miRNA families and 17 mature miRNAs from 17 miRNA families using the SYBR Green RT–PCR assay. This is the first report of expression profiles for both precursor and mature miRNAs in P. euphratica . By profiling both the mature miRNAs and the precursors under abiotic stress shock, it was possible to identify miRNA whose processing is regulated during stress shock environments. A majority of the genes predicted to be targets for plant miRNAs are involved in development, stress resistance and metabolic processes. We have cloned and experimentally identified in vivo five of the predicted target genes and quantified the five target mRNAs from the same RNA sample simultaneously. Based on this study, we propose some regulatory pathways that illustrate the important role that miRNAs play in response to abiotic stress shock in P. euphratica.
Plant Cell Reports – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 1, 2011
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