An inducible program of inflammatory gene expression is central to antimicrobial defenses. Signal-dependent activation of transcription factors, transcriptional co-regulators, and chromatin modifying factors collaborate to control this response. Here, researchers from the University of Massachusetts Medical School identify a long noncoding RNA that acts as a key regulator of this inflammatory response. Pattern recognition receptors such as the Toll-like receptors induce the expression of numerous lncRNAs. One of these, lincRNA-Cox2 mediates both the activation and repression of distinct classes of immune genes. Transcriptional repression of target genes is dependent on interactions of lincRNA-Cox2 with heterogeneous nuclear ribonucleoprotein A/B and A2/B1. Collectively, these studies unveil a central role of lincRNA-Cox2 as a broad acting regulatory component of the circuit that controls the inflammatory response.
- Carpenter S, Atianand M, Aiello D, Ricci EP, Gandhi P, Hall LL, Byron M, Monks B, Henry-Bezy M, Lawrence JB, O’Neill LA, Moore MJ, Caffrey DR, Fitzgerald KA. (2013) A Long Noncoding RNA Mediates Both Activation and Repression of Immune Response Genes. Science [Epub ahead of print]. [abstract]