Intron splicing suppresses RNA silencing in Arabidopsis

Christie, Michael, Croft, Larry J. and Carroll, BJ (2011) Intron splicing suppresses RNA silencing in Arabidopsis. Plant Journal, 68 1: 159-167. doi:10.1111/j.1365-313X.2011.04676.x

Author Christie, Michael
Croft, Larry J.
Carroll, BJ
Title Intron splicing suppresses RNA silencing in Arabidopsis
Journal name Plant Journal   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0960-7412
Publication date 2011-10
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/j.1365-313X.2011.04676.x
Volume 68
Issue 1
Start page 159
End page 167
Total pages 9
Place of publication Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell Publishing
Collection year 2012
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Silencing of introduced transgenes constitutes a major bottleneck in the production of transgenic crops. Commonly, these transgenes contain no introns, a feature shared with transposons, which are also prime targets for gene silencing. Given that introns are very common in endogenous genes but are often lacking in transgenes and transposons, we hypothesised that introns may suppress gene silencing. To investigate this, we conducted a genome-wide analysis of small RNA densities in exons from intronless versus intron-containing genes in Arabidopsis thaliana. We found that small RNA libraries are strongly enriched for exon sequences derived from intronless genes. Small RNA densities in exons of intronless genes were comparable to exons of transposable elements. To test these findings in vivo we used a transgenic reporter system to determine whether introns are able to suppress gene silencing in Arabidopsis. Introducing an intron into a transgene reduced silencing by more than fourfold. Compared with intronless transcripts, the spliced transcripts were less effective substrates for RNA-dependent RNA polymerase 6-mediated gene silencing. This intron suppression of transgene silencing requires efficient intron splicing and is dependent on ABH1, the Arabidopsis orthologue of human cap-binding protein 80.
Keyword Gene silencing
Intron splicing
RNA-dependent RNA polymerase
ABA Hypersensitive 1
Cap-binding complex
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2012 Collection
School of Chemistry and Molecular Biosciences
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