MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small RNAs of approximately 22 nucleotides, which function as regulators of gene expression in eukaryotes. miRNAs are initially expressed in the nucleus as part of long primary transcripts called primary miRNAs (pri-miRNAs). Inside the nucleus, pri-miRNAs are partially digested by the enzyme Drosha, to form -70 nucleotide-long hairpin precursor miRNA (pre-miRNA) that is exported to the cytoplasm for further processing by into shorter, and mature miRNAs.
During both normal development and pathological states, there is sometimes a disparity between the expression levels of pri-miRNAs and the presence of the corresponding mature miRNAs. The initiation of pri-miRNA processing by Drosha represents a fundamental regulatory step in miRNA processing. Dr. Hammond and colleagues have determined that that blocking Drosha activity can suppress miRNA production in cancer cells.
"The alterations in miRNA expression that are observed in cancer are dramatic. Our studies raise the possibility that a single regulatory event could be the cause of this widespread miRNA mis-regulation. Understanding this regulatory step will provide important information about the molecular events in carcinogenesis, and may lead to novel therapeutic strategies."
Heather Cosel | EurekAlert!
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On August 17, 2017, at 12:41:04 UTC, scientists made the first direct observation of a merger between two neutron stars--the dense, collapsed cores that remain...
Seven new papers describe the first-ever detection of light from a gravitational wave source. The event, caused by two neutron stars colliding and merging together, was dubbed GW170817 because it sent ripples through space-time that reached Earth on 2017 August 17. Around the world, hundreds of excited astronomers mobilized quickly and were able to observe the event using numerous telescopes, providing a wealth of new data.
Previous detections of gravitational waves have all involved the merger of two black holes, a feat that won the 2017 Nobel Prize in Physics earlier this month....
Material defects in end products can quickly result in failures in many areas of industry, and have a massive impact on the safe use of their products. This is why, in the field of quality assurance, intelligent, nondestructive sensor systems play a key role. They allow testing components and parts in a rapid and cost-efficient manner without destroying the actual product or changing its surface. Experts from the Fraunhofer IZFP in Saarbrücken will be presenting two exhibits at the Blechexpo in Stuttgart from 7–10 November 2017 that allow fast, reliable, and automated characterization of materials and detection of defects (Hall 5, Booth 5306).
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Using a new cooling technique MPQ scientists succeed at observing collisions in a dense beam of cold and slow dipolar molecules.
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Scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics, using high precision laser spectroscopy of atomic hydrogen, confirm the surprisingly small value of the proton radius determined from muonic hydrogen.
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