Abiotic and biotic stressors in human cells are often a result of sudden and/or frequent changes in environmental factors. The molecular response to stress involves elaborate modulation of gene expression and is of homeostatic, ecological, and evolutionary importance. Although attention has primarily focused on signaling pathways and protein networks, long non-coding RNAs (ncRNAs) are increasingly involved in the molecular mechanisms associated with responses to cellular stresses.
Researchers at the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan identified six novel short-lived long ncRNAs (MIR22HG, GABPB-AS1, LINC00152, IDI2-AS1, SNHG15, and FLJ33630) that responded to chemical stressors (cisplatin, cycloheximide, and mercury (II) oxide) in HeLa Tet-off cells. Their results indicate that short-lived long ncRNAs respond to general and specific chemical stressors. The expression levels of the short-lived long ncRNAs were elevated because of prolonged decay rates in response to chemical stressors and interruption of RNA degradation pathways. They propose that these long ncRNAs have the potential to be surrogate indicators of cellular stress responses.
- Tani H, Torimura M. (2013) Identification of short-lived long non-coding RNAs as surrogate indicators for chemical stress response. Biochem Biophys Res Commun [Epub ahead of print]. [abstract]