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      Duplexes of 21-nucleotide RNAs mediate RNA interference in cultured mammalian cells.

      Nature

      genetics, Animals, Vimentin, metabolism, antagonists & inhibitors, RNA, Messenger, pharmacology, RNA, Double-Stranded, Nucleic Acid Hybridization, Nuclear Proteins, Nuclear Matrix-Associated Proteins, Lamins, Humans, HeLa Cells, Genetic Techniques, Genes, Reporter, physiology, Genes, Gene Silencing, Drosophila, Cnidaria, Cells, Cultured, COS Cells, Beetles, Antigens, Nuclear

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          Abstract

          RNA interference (RNAi) is the process of sequence-specific, post-transcriptional gene silencing in animals and plants, initiated by double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) that is homologous in sequence to the silenced gene. The mediators of sequence-specific messenger RNA degradation are 21- and 22-nucleotide small interfering RNAs (siRNAs) generated by ribonuclease III cleavage from longer dsRNAs. Here we show that 21-nucleotide siRNA duplexes specifically suppress expression of endogenous and heterologous genes in different mammalian cell lines, including human embryonic kidney (293) and HeLa cells. Therefore, 21-nucleotide siRNA duplexes provide a new tool for studying gene function in mammalian cells and may eventually be used as gene-specific therapeutics.

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          Most cited references 26

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          Role for a bidentate ribonuclease in the initiation step of RNA interference.

          RNA interference (RNAi) is the mechanism through which double-stranded RNAs silence cognate genes. In plants, this can occur at both the transcriptional and the post-transcriptional levels; however, in animals, only post-transcriptional RNAi has been reported to date. In both plants and animals, RNAi is characterized by the presence of RNAs of about 22 nucleotides in length that are homologous to the gene that is being suppressed. These 22-nucleotide sequences serve as guide sequences that instruct a multicomponent nuclease, RISC, to destroy specific messenger RNAs. Here we identify an enzyme, Dicer, which can produce putative guide RNAs. Dicer is a member of the RNase III family of nucleases that specifically cleave double-stranded RNAs, and is evolutionarily conserved in worms, flies, plants, fungi and mammals. The enzyme has a distinctive structure, which includes a helicase domain and dual RNase III motifs. Dicer also contains a region of homology to the RDE1/QDE2/ARGONAUTE family that has been genetically linked to RNAi.
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            • Record: found
            • Abstract: found
            • Article: not found

            How cells respond to interferons.

            Interferons play key roles in mediating antiviral and antigrowth responses and in modulating immune response. The main signaling pathways are rapid and direct. They involve tyrosine phosphorylation and activation of signal transducers and activators of transcription factors by Janus tyrosine kinases at the cell membrane, followed by release of signal transducers and activators of transcription and their migration to the nucleus, where they induce the expression of the many gene products that determine the responses. Ancillary pathways are also activated by the interferons, but their effects on cell physiology are less clear. The Janus kinases and signal transducers and activators of transcription, and many of the interferon-induced proteins, play important alternative roles in cells, raising interesting questions as to how the responses to the interferons intersect with more general aspects of cellular physiology and how the specificity of cytokine responses is maintained.
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              • Record: found
              • Abstract: not found
              • Article: not found

              RNA interference is mediated by 21- and 22-nucleotide RNAs.

               S. Elbashir (2001)
              Double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) induces sequence-specific posttranscriptional gene silencing in many organisms by a process known as RNA interference (RNAi). Using a Drosophila in vitro system, we demonstrate that 21- and 22-nt RNA fragments are the sequence-specific mediators of RNAi. The short interfering RNAs (siRNAs) are generated by an RNase III-like processing reaction from long dsRNA. Chemically synthesized siRNA duplexes with overhanging 3' ends mediate efficient target RNA cleavage in the lysate, and the cleavage site is located near the center of the region spanned by the guiding siRNA. Furthermore, we provide evidence that the direction of dsRNA processing determines whether sense or antisense target RNA can be cleaved by the siRNA-protein complex.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                10.1038/35078107
                11373684

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