Rice germline-specific Argonaute MEL1 protein binds to phasiRNAs generated from more than 700 lincRNAs

Reina Komiya*, Hajime Ohyanagi, Mitsuru Niihama, Toshiaki Watanabe, Mutsuko Nakano, Nori Kurata, Ken Ichi Nonomura

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

101 Scopus citations

Abstract

Small RNAs that interact with Argonaute (AGO) proteins play central roles in RNA-mediated silencing. MEIOSIS ARRESTED AT LEPTOTENE1 (MEL1), a rice AGO, has specific functions in the development of pre-meiotic germ cells and the progression of meiosis. Here, we show that MEL1, which is located mostly in the cytoplasm of germ cells, associates preferentially with 21-nucleotide phased small interfering RNAs (phasiRNAs) that bear a 5′-terminal cytosine. Most phasiRNAs are derived from 1171 intergenic clusters distributed on all rice chromosomes. From these clusters, over 700 large intergenic, non-coding RNAs (lincRNAs) that contain the consensus sequence complementary to miR2118 are transcribed specifically in inflorescences, and cleaved within the miR2118 site. Cleaved lincRNAs are processed via DICER-LIKE4 (DCL4) protein, resulting in production of phasiRNAs. This study provides the evidence that the miR2118-dependent and the DCL4-dependent pathways are both required for biogenesis of 21-nt phasiRNAs associated with germline-specific MEL1 AGO in rice, and over 700 lincRNAs are key factors for induction of this biogenesis during reproductive-specific stages.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)385-397
Number of pages13
JournalPlant Journal
Volume78
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 2014

Keywords

  • Argonaute
  • lincRNA
  • phasiRNA
  • reproduction
  • rice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Plant Science
  • Cell Biology
  • Genetics
  • Medicine(all)

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