Study Finds Long RNA Mimics DNA And Inhibits Hormone Responses In Breast Cancer

Study Finds Long RNA Mimics DNA And Inhibits Hormone Responses In Breast Cancer
shutterstock_148514399In a recent study, titled “Conserved sequence-specific lincRNA–steroid receptor interactions drive transcriptional repression and direct cell fate”, and published in Nature Communications, a team of researchers from Emory Health Sciences Center, led by Eric Ortlund, PhD, has investigated how Gas5 RNA, a long intergenic non-coding RNA (lincRNA) that has a major role in prostate and breast cancer, interacts with steroid hormone receptors. This type of RNA represents the most poorly understood product of transcription, and it originates from what scientists call “junk DNA”. However, recent studies have demonstrated that lincRNAs can fulfil important cellular functions. The Gas5 gene functions as a brake on steroid hormone receptors, transforming it into an important player in malignancies such as hormone-sensitive breast cancer. Unlike the majority of genes, Gas5 does not encode a protein, it gets transcribed into RNA that accumulates in the cells which are exposed to stress and binds itself to steroid hormone receptors, preventing these receptors from binding DNA and regulate genes on and off. In their study, scientists investigated the molecular requirements for the recognition of steroid receptors by
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