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Pseudogenes as an alternative source of natural antisense transcripts

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Item Type:Article
Title:Pseudogenes as an alternative source of natural antisense transcripts
Creators Name:Muro, E.M. and Andrade-Navarro, M.A.
Abstract:BACKGROUND: Naturally occurring antisense transcripts (NATs) are non-coding RNAs that may regulate the activity of sense transcripts to which they bind because of complementarity. NATs that are not located in the gene they regulate (trans-NATs) have better chances to evolve than cis-NATs, which is evident when the sense strand of the cis-NAT is part of a protein coding gene. However, the generation of a trans-NAT requires the formation of a relatively large region of complementarity to the gene it regulates. RESULTS: Pseudogene formation may be one evolutionary mechanism that generates trans-NATs to the parental gene. For example, this could occur if the parental gene is regulated by a cis-NAT that is copied as a trans-NAT in the pseudogene. To support this we identified human pseudogenes with a trans-NAT to the parental gene in their antisense strand by analysis of the database of expressed sequence tags (ESTs). We found that the mutations that appeared in these trans-NATs after the pseudogene formation do not show the flat distribution that would be expected in a non functional transcript. Instead, we found higher similarity to the parental gene in a region nearby the 3' end of the trans-NATs. CONCLUSIONS: Our results do not imply a functional relation of the trans-NAT arising from pseudogenes over their respective parental genes but add evidence for it and stress the importance of duplication mechanisms of genetic material in the generation of non-coding RNAs. We also provide a plausible explanation for the large transcripts that can be found in the antisense strand of some pseudogenes.
Keywords:Antisense RNA, Expressed Sequence Tags, Genetic Databases, Molecular Evolution, Pseudogenes, Animals
Source:BMC Evolutionary Biology
Publisher:BioMed Central
Page Range:338
Date:3 November 2010
Official Publication:https://doi.org/10.1186/1471-2148-10-338
PubMed:View item in PubMed

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