A link between mRNA turnover and RNA interference in Arabidopsis

S. Gazzani, T. Lawrenson, C. Woodward, D. Headon, R. Sablowski

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


    In RNA interference (RNAi), double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) triggers degradation of homologous messenger RNA. In many organisms, RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) is required to initiate or amplify RNAi, but the substrate for dsRNA synthesis in vivo is not known. Here, we show that RdRp-dependent transgene silencing in Arabidopsis was caused by mutation of XRN4, which is a ribonuclease (RNase) implicated in mRNA turnover by means of decapping and 5′-3′ exonucleolysis. When both XRN4 and the RdRp were mutated, the plants accumulated decapped transgene mRNA. We propose that mRNAs lacking a cap structure become exposed to RdRp to initiate or maintain RNAi.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)1046-1048
    Number of pages2
    Issue number5698
    Publication statusPublished - 5 Nov 2004


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