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      Kissing-loop interaction between 5′ and 3′ ends of tick-borne Langat virus genome ‘bridges the gap’ between mosquito- and tick-borne flaviviruses in mechanisms of viral RNA cyclization: applications for virus attenuation and vaccine development

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          Abstract

          Insertion of microRNA target sequences into the flavivirus genome results in selective tissue-specific attenuation and host-range restriction of live attenuated vaccine viruses. However, previous strategies for miRNA-targeting did not incorporate a mechanism to prevent target elimination under miRNA-mediated selective pressure, restricting their use in vaccine development. To overcome this limitation, we developed a new approach for miRNA-targeting of tick-borne flavivirus (Langat virus, LGTV) in the duplicated capsid gene region (DCGR). Genetic stability of viruses with DCGR was ensured by the presence of multiple cis-acting elements within the N-terminal capsid coding region, including the stem-loop structure (5′SL6) at the 3′ end of the promoter. We found that the 5′SL6 functions as a structural scaffold for the conserved hexanucleotide motif at its tip and engages in a complementary interaction with the region present in the 3′ NCR to enhance viral RNA replication. The resulting kissing-loop interaction, common in tick-borne flaviviruses, supports a single pair of cyclization elements (CYC) and functions as a homolog of the second pair of CYC that is present in the majority of mosquito-borne flaviviruses. Placing miRNA targets into the DCGR results in superior attenuation of LGTV in the CNS and does not interfere with development of protective immunity in immunized mice.

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          Most cited references 63

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          MicroRNAs: target recognition and regulatory functions.

           David Bartel (2009)
          MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are endogenous approximately 23 nt RNAs that play important gene-regulatory roles in animals and plants by pairing to the mRNAs of protein-coding genes to direct their posttranscriptional repression. This review outlines the current understanding of miRNA target recognition in animals and discusses the widespread impact of miRNAs on both the expression and evolution of protein-coding genes.
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            Mfold web server for nucleic acid folding and hybridization prediction.

             M Zuker (2003)
            The abbreviated name, 'mfold web server', describes a number of closely related software applications available on the World Wide Web (WWW) for the prediction of the secondary structure of single stranded nucleic acids. The objective of this web server is to provide easy access to RNA and DNA folding and hybridization software to the scientific community at large. By making use of universally available web GUIs (Graphical User Interfaces), the server circumvents the problem of portability of this software. Detailed output, in the form of structure plots with or without reliability information, single strand frequency plots and 'energy dot plots', are available for the folding of single sequences. A variety of 'bulk' servers give less information, but in a shorter time and for up to hundreds of sequences at once. The portal for the mfold web server is http://www.bioinfo.rpi.edu/applications/mfold. This URL will be referred to as 'MFOLDROOT'.
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              Mechanisms of post-transcriptional regulation by microRNAs: are the answers in sight?

              MicroRNAs constitute a large family of small, approximately 21-nucleotide-long, non-coding RNAs that have emerged as key post-transcriptional regulators of gene expression in metazoans and plants. In mammals, microRNAs are predicted to control the activity of approximately 30% of all protein-coding genes, and have been shown to participate in the regulation of almost every cellular process investigated so far. By base pairing to mRNAs, microRNAs mediate translational repression or mRNA degradation. This Review summarizes the current understanding of the mechanistic aspects of microRNA-induced repression of translation and discusses some of the controversies regarding different modes of microRNA function.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                Nucleic Acids Res
                Nucleic Acids Res
                nar
                nar
                Nucleic Acids Research
                Oxford University Press
                0305-1048
                1362-4962
                20 April 2016
                04 February 2016
                04 February 2016
                : 44
                : 7
                : 3330-3350
                Affiliations
                [1 ]Laboratory of Infectious Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), National Institutes of Health (NIH), Bethesda, MD, 20892-3203 USA
                [2 ]Bioinformatics and Computational Biosciences Branch, NIAID, NIH, Bethesda, MD, 20892, USA
                Author notes
                [* ]To whom correspondence should be addressed. Tel: +1 301 402 7754; Fax: +1 301 480 0501; Email: apletnev@ 123456niaid.nih.gov
                10.1093/nar/gkw061
                4838367
                26850640
                Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Nucleic Acids Research 2016. This work is written by (a) US Government employee(s) and is in the public domain in the US.
                Counts
                Pages: 21
                Product
                Categories
                RNA
                Custom metadata
                20 April 2016

                Genetics

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