Have you recently read an important paper from your field that you'd like to recommend to your colleagues? Send us the reference, along with a couple of lines about what grabbed your interest, and we'll pass it along in Insights.
Nikolaus Rajewsky recommended a number of papers during. This one from the Burge lab at MIT also involves neurons:
- Taliaferro JM, Vidaki M, Oliveira R, Olson S, Zhan L, Saxena T, Wang ET, Graveley BR, Gertler FB, Swanson MS, Burge CB. (2016): Molecular Cell 61(6), p. 821-33. doi:
The paper draws together some of the themes raised in the talks by connecting the splicing of RNAs to their localization and functions. Neuronal cells have highly specialized regions that may lie far away from the nucleus and require specific isoforms of molecules. Different versions of RNAs are created through alternative splicing, and then are delivered to regions where they are needed before being translated. This paper by Taliferro and his colleagues at MIT shows that the final (3') exon that is selected during splicing determines the destination of hundreds of mRNAs. Different exons alter the sites where proteins of the muscleblind-like (Mbnl) family bind, and knockdowns of Mbnls lead to the displacement of of hundreds of mRNAs. This supports a viewpoint Nikolaus raised at the end of the lectures: once considered mainly as targets of regulatory miRNAs, the distal and 3' untranslated regions of RNAs are now appreciated for playing many more roles in RNA processing, localization and functions.
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