It is becoming increasingly evident that the RNA degradome is a crucial component of the total cellular RNA pool. Here, we present an analysis of the medium-sized RNAs (midi RNAs) that form in Arabidopsis thaliana. Our analyses revealed that the midi RNA fraction contained mostly 20–70-nt-long fragments derived from various RNA species, including tRNA, rRNA, mRNA and snRNA. The majority of these fragments could be classified as stable RNA degradation intermediates (RNA degradants). Using two dimensional polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis, we demonstrated that high copy number RNA (hcn RNA) degradants appear in plant cells not only during stress, as it was earlier suggested. They are continuously produced also under physiological conditions. The data collected indicated that the accumulation pattern of the hcn RNA degradants is organ-specific and can be affected by various endogenous and exogenous factors. In addition, we demonstrated that selected degradants efficiently inhibit translation in vitro. Thus, the results of our studies suggest that hcn RNA degradants are likely to be involved in the regulation of gene expression in plants.
Plant Molecular Biology – Springer Journals
Published: May 25, 2013
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