Journal Article

Biased hosting of intronic microRNA genes

David Golan, Carmit Levy, Brad Friedman and Noam Shomron

in Bioinformatics

Volume 26, issue 8, pages 992-995
Published in print April 2010 | ISSN: 1367-4803
Published online February 2010 | e-ISSN: 1460-2059 | DOI:
Biased hosting of intronic microRNA genes

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Motivation: MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are involved in an abundant class of post-transcriptional regulation activated through binding to the 3 -untranslated region (UTR) of mRNAs. The current wealth of mammalian miRNA genes results mostly from genomic duplication events. Many of these events are located within introns of transcriptional units. In order to better understand the genomic expansion of miRNA genes, we investigated the distribution of intronic miRNAs.

Results: We observe that miRNA genes are hosted within introns of short genes much larger than expected by chance.

Implementation: We explore several explanations for this phenomenon and conclude that miRNA integration into short genes might be evolutionary favorable due to interaction with the pre-mRNA splicing mechanism.


Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available at Bioinformatics online.

Journal Article.  3115 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Bioinformatics and Computational Biology

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