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3'UTR Shortening Potentiates MicroRNA-Based Repression of Pro-differentiation Genes in Proliferating Human Cells.

By Yonit Hoffman, Debora Rosa Bublik, Alejandro P Ugalde, Ran Elkon, Tammy Biniashvili, Reuven Agami, Moshe Oren and Yitzhak Pilpel

Abstract

Most mammalian genes often feature alternative polyadenylation (APA) sites and hence diverse 3'UTR lengths. Proliferating cells were reported to favor APA sites that result in shorter 3'UTRs. One consequence of such shortening is escape of mRNAs from targeting by microRNAs (miRNAs) whose binding sites are eliminated. Such a mechanism might provide proliferation-related genes with an expression gain during normal or cancerous proliferation. Notably, miRNA sites tend to be more active when located near both ends of the 3'UTR compared to those located more centrally. Accordingly, miRNA sites located near the center of the full 3'UTR might become more active upon 3'UTR shortening. To address this conjecture we performed 3' sequencing to determine the 3' ends of all human UTRs in several cell lines. Remarkably, we found that conserved miRNA binding sites are preferentially enriched immediately upstream to APA sites, and this enrichment is more prominent in pro-differentiation/anti-proliferative genes. Binding sites of the miR17-92 cluster, upregulated in rapidly proliferating cells, are particularly enriched just upstream to APA sites, presumably conferring stronger inhibitory activity upon shortening. Thus 3'UTR shortening appears not only to enable escape from inhibition of growth promoting genes but also to potentiate repression of anti-proliferative genes

Topics: Genetics, QH426-470
Publisher: Public Library of Science (PLoS)
Year: 2016
DOI identifier: 10.1371/journal.pgen.1005879
OAI identifier: oai:doaj.org/article:01e8bb37cd3d44e7a3a6be946e3a32b5
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