Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Gouri, P. R., Jisha, S., and K. K. Sabu. 2020. Dataset on Discovery of MicroRNAs in Centella asiatica (L.) Urb. Data in Brief 106451. Available online 22 October 2020. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.dib.2020.106451

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small (21–24 nucleotides), non-coding, riboregulators that regulate gene expression in eukaryotes. Pentacyclic triterpenoid saponins and sapogenins known as centellosides of the plant Centella asiatica (L.) Urb. are known for their broad spectrum medicinal properties. Two C. asiatica accessions viz.,CA301 and CA308 were selected for the miRNAome profiling. Total RNA isolated from fresh young leaves of both accessions along with their replicas was used for library construction. Illumina® sequencing of the four small RNA libraries generated a total of 59,234,923; 58,487,817; 59,520,376; 64,093,228 raw reads. The raw reads were quality filtered and used for the prediction of conserved and novel miRNAs. A total of 227 conserved and 109 novel microRNAs were identified from the libraries. Target gene prediction done using psRNAtarget and PANTHER™GO helped in localization of predicted targets. KEGG (Kyoto Encyclopedia for Genes and Genomes) was used for pathway prediction of the targets of predicted miRNAs. The present study provides first elaborated glimpse of miRNA pool of C. asiatica. The outcome of this research could help understand miRNA dependent regulation of centelloside biosynthesis and to design further metabolic engineering experiments to enhance their content in this important medicinal plant.

Role of miRNAs in biotic and abiotic stress management in crop plants

Anjali N & Sabu K K (2020). Role of miRNAs in biotic and abiotic stress management in crop plants. In: Sustainable Agriculture in the Era of Climate Change. Edited by R. Roychowdhury (Springer New York, USA). Pp. 513-532. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-45669-6_22

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are endogenous, 18–25 nucleotide in length, and noncoding RNAs found in animals, plants, and in some viruses. They have been recognized as an important class of gene expression regulators and are involved in a multitude of biological processes in plants, including organ differentiation and development, metabolism, and response to biotic and abiotic stress factors, to mention a few. The method of action of miRNA is by binding to a ribonucleoprotein complex which is incorporated with a protein of Argonaute family. This RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC) targets the mRNA and inhibits its expression by degrading mRNA or by translational repression. It has been reported that posttranscriptional regulation mediated by miRNAs has important roles in adverse stress conditions. Some miRNAs respond to a number of abiotic and biotic stresses, and some others are stress specific. Not only characterization of miRNAs but also identification of their targets is crucial in this field of research. The participation of miRNAs in a species-specific manner to biotic and abiotic stress responses reveals the functional diversification of miRNAs among plant species and highlights the importance of conducting miRNA studies in diverse plant species. MicroRNA-based genetic modification technology is a very powerful technique to develop high-yielding crops which can resist biotic and abiotic stress factors.

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