Alternative splicing regulates biogenesis of miRNAs located across exon-intron junctions.

Abstract

The initial step in microRNA (miRNA) biogenesis requires processing of the precursor miRNA (pre-miRNA) from a longer primary transcript. Many pre-miRNAs originate from introns, and both a mature miRNA and a spliced RNA can be generated from the same transcription unit. We have identified a mechanism in which RNA splicing negatively regulates the processing of pre-miRNAs that overlap exon-intron junctions. Computational analysis identified dozens of such pre-miRNAs, and experimental validation demonstrated competitive interaction between the Microprocessor complex and the splicing machinery. Tissue-specific alternative splicing regulates maturation of one such miRNA, miR-412, resulting in effects on its targets that code a protein network involved in neuronal cell death processes. This mode of regulation specifically controls maturation of splice-site-overlapping pre-miRNAs but not pre-miRNAs located completely within introns or exons of the same transcript. Our data present a biological role of alternative splicing in regulation of miRNA biogenesis.

DOI: 10.1016/j.molcel.2013.05.007

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@article{Melamed2013AlternativeSR, title={Alternative splicing regulates biogenesis of miRNAs located across exon-intron junctions.}, author={Ze'ev Melamed and Asaf Levy and Reut Ashwal-Fluss and Galit Lev-Maor and Keren Mekahel and Nir Atias and Shlomit Gilad and Roded Sharan and Carmit Levy and Sebasti{\'a}n Kadener and Gil Ast}, journal={Molecular cell}, year={2013}, volume={50 6}, pages={869-81} }