A double-stranded-RNA response program important for RNA interference efficiency

Swati Choudhary, Heng Chi Lee, Mekhala Maiti, Qun He, Ping Cheng, Qinghua Liu, Yi Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

50 Scopus citations

Abstract

When recognized by the RNA interference (RNAi) pathway, double-stranded RNA (dsRNA) produced in eukaryotic cells results in posttranscriptional gene silencing. In addition, dsRNA can trigger the interferon response as part of the immune response in vertebrates. In this study, we show that dsRNA, but not short interfering RNA (siRNA), induces the expression of qde-2 (an Argonaute gene) and dcl-2 (a Dicer gene), two central components of the RNAi pathway in the filamentous fungus Neurospora crassa. The induction of QDE-2 by dsRNA is required for normal gene silencing, indicating that this is a regulatory mechanism that allows the optimal function of the RNAi pathway. In addition, we demonstrate that Dicer proteins (DCLs) regulate QDE-2 posttranscriptionally, suggesting a role for DCLs or siRNA in QDE-2 accumulation. Finally, a genome-wide search revealed that additional RNAi components and homologs of antiviral and interferon stimulated genes are also dsRNA-activated genes in Neurospora. Together, our results suggest that the activation of the RNAi components is part of a broad ancient host defense response against viral and transposon infections.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3995-4005
Number of pages11
JournalMolecular and cellular biology
Volume27
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 2007

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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