MicroRNA and cellular differentiation

MicroRNA and oral cancer

About the project

MicroRNA transcription occurs via RNA polymerase II. These transcripts, referred to as primary (pri-) miRNAs, can be several kilobases long and containing mono-cistronic or poly-cistronic stem-loop structures. The monocistronic transcripts encode individual miRNAs, while the poly-cistronic transcripts contain a number of miRNAs that are coordinately expressed, so called miRNA clusters. These clusters are processed into individual miRNAs. The miR-17-92 miRNA cluster is a poly-cistronic gene located on human chromosome 13q31, and on murine chromosome 14.The primary miR-17-92 transcript is the precursor of seven miRNA molecules (miR-17-3p, miR-17-5p (miR-17), miR-18a, miR-19a, miR-20a, miR-19b-1 and miR-92a-1).
A number of studies have implicated the miR-17-92 clusters in development. The miR-17-92 cluster have a critical role duringin lung and heart development. In mice deficient expression of miR-17-92 cluster is not compatible with post-natal survival. The activity of this cluster is studied at various developmental stages, in several tissues, in the mouse.The activity of the cluster is also studied at selected passages of cultured, primary, oral keratinocytes and at selected passages of cultured oral carcinoma cells. The activity of related clusters are also studies in cell cultures, using RNA transfection as a means to perturb the activity of the clusters. In this way we hope to gain insight into regulation of expression of miRNAs as well as into their cellular functions.


The project has been active for 3 years and is supported by faculty funding.
Tags: Cranofacial biology, epigenetic, miR-17-92 cluster, pri-miR, keratinocytes
Published Oct. 6, 2010 1:57 PM - Last modified Nov. 10, 2010 3:12 PM