Inhibiting miRNA in Caenorhabditis elegans using a potent and selective antisense reagent

Genhua Zheng, Victor Ambros, Wen Hong Li

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

14 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background: Antisense reagents can serve as efficient and versatile tools for studying gene function by inhibiting nucleic acids in vivo. Antisense reagents have particular utility for the experimental manipulation of the activity of microRNAs (miRNAs), which are involved in the regulation of diverse developmental and physiological pathways in animals. Even in traditional genetic systems, such as the nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, antisense reagents can provide experimental strategies complementary to mutational approaches. Presently no antisense reagents are available for inhibiting miRNAs in the nematode C. elegans.Results: We have developed a new class of fluorescently labelled antisense reagents to inhibit miRNAs in developing worms. These reagents were synthesized by conjugating dextran with 2'-O-methyl oligoribonucleotide. The dextran-conjugated antisense reagents can be conveniently introduced into the germline of adult hermaphrodites and are transmitted to their progeny, where they efficiently and specifically inhibit a targeted miRNA in different tissues, including the hypodermis, the vulva and the nervous system. We show that these reagents can be used combinatorially to inhibit more than one miRNA in the same animal.Conclusion: This class of antisense reagents represents a new addition to the toolkit for studying miRNA in C. elegans. Combined with numerous mutants or reporter stains available, these reagents should provide a convenient approach to examine genetic interactions that involve miRNA, and may facilitate studying functions of miRNAs, especially ones whose deletion strains are difficult to generate.See related research article: http://jbiol.com/content/9/3/20.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number9
JournalSilence
Volume1
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1 2010

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Caenorhabditis elegans
MicroRNAs
Dextrans
Oligoribonucleotides
Vulva
Subcutaneous Tissue
Nucleic Acids
Nervous System
Coloring Agents

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Biotechnology

Cite this

Inhibiting miRNA in Caenorhabditis elegans using a potent and selective antisense reagent. / Zheng, Genhua; Ambros, Victor; Li, Wen Hong.

In: Silence, Vol. 1, No. 1, 9, 01.04.2010.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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