What are MicroRNA sponges?


MicroRNA sponges are decoy targets for miRNA seed families !

Ebert, Neilson & Sharp in 2007 report how to make decoy targets for several microRNA seed families, and named them ‘microRNA sponges’. Furthermore the researchers tested their ability to derepress microRNA targets in mammalian cells. In their paper in Nature Methods the scientists presented evidence that microRNA sponges are at least as effective as other antisense technologies and that their activity is specific to microRNA seed families. They showed that microRNA sponges can be used to validate target predictions and assay microRNA loss-of-function phenotypes. This method presents an alternative to injecting synthetic targets. The expression of transcripts with multiple miRNA sites provides a means to sequester miRNAs in vivo. The term miRNA ‘sponge’ describes  the use of a transgene to ‘soak up’ endogenous miRNAs.

Reference

Margaret S Ebert, Joel R Neilson & Phillip A Sharp; MicroRNA sponges: competitive inhibitors of small RNAs in mammalian cells Nature Methods 4, 721 – 726 (2007). Published online: 12 August 2007 | doi:10.1038/nmeth1079.



Categories: miRNA, miRNA sponges, non-coding RNAs, Regulatory RNA, RNA, RNA Synthesis, RNA World, RNAi

Tags: , , , , ,

1 reply

  1. Thanks for the marvelous posting! I really enjoyed reading it, you could be a great author.

    I will ensure that I bookmark your blog and will come back sometime soon.
    I want to encourage yourself to continue your great work, have a nice holiday weekend!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: