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Regulation of microRNA biogenesis

Regulation of microRNA biogenesis

PhD project

MicroRNAs are small inhibitory RNAs that play important roles in the regulation of all biological processes. They function by targeting protein-coding mRNAs for translational repression. The biogenesis of most microRNAs is dependent on the two RNase III enzymes Drosha and Dicer. However, the activities of these enzymes appear to be highly regulated, with differing tissue-specific impacts. Furthermore, not all microRNAs are dependent on both these RNase III enzymes. Thus, there is still much we do not understand about microRNA biogenesis. This project will investigate the regulation of microRNA biogenesis, and may focus on the regulation of the canonical pathway, and/or the identification/characterisation of non-canonical pathways. Potential techniques to be applied include proteomics, molecular biology and various genomic approaches. Ultimately, a detailed understanding of microRNA biogenesis will facilitate a better understanding of gene regulation and how this impacts the differentiation and function of specific cells/tissues.

References:
Srivastava (2015), Nat Commun, 6:6253.
Kirigin (2012), J Immunol, 188:3257-67.
Cheloufi (2010), Nature, 465:584-9.
Chong (2010), Genes Dev, 24:1951-60.

Supervised by:

  • Dr Mark Chong
  • Disease Focus:

  • Cancer
  • Type 1 diabetes
  • Research Unit:

  • Genomics and immunology