Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2012, 13(8), 10268-10295; doi:10.3390/ijms130810268
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Biogenesis and Mechanism of Action of Small Non-Coding RNAs: Insights from the Point of View of Structural Biology

1 Instituto de Medicina Molecular, Faculdade de Medicina, Universidade de Lisboa, Av. Prof. Egas Moniz, Lisboa 1649-028, Portugal 2 Departamento de Ciências e Tecnologia da Biomassa, Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Campus da Caparica, Caparica 2829-516, Portugal
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 30 May 2012; in revised form: 17 July 2012 / Accepted: 2 August 2012 / Published: 17 August 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Protein Crystallography in Molecular Biology)
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Abstract: Non-coding RNAs are dominant in the genomic output of the higher organisms being not simply occasional transcripts with idiosyncratic functions, but constituting an extensive regulatory network. Among all the species of non-coding RNAs, small non-coding RNAs (miRNAs, siRNAs and piRNAs) have been shown to be in the core of the regulatory machinery of all the genomic output in eukaryotic cells. Small non-coding RNAs are produced by several pathways containing specialized enzymes that process RNA transcripts. The mechanism of action of these molecules is also ensured by a group of effector proteins that are commonly engaged within high molecular weight protein-RNA complexes. In the last decade, the contribution of structural biology has been essential to the dissection of the molecular mechanisms involved in the biosynthesis and function of small non-coding RNAs.
Keywords: non-coding RNA; structural biology; X-ray crystallography; microprocessor; miRNAs; Dicer; DGCR8; argonaute

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MDPI and ACS Style

Costa, M.C.; Leitão, A.L.; Enguita, F.J. Biogenesis and Mechanism of Action of Small Non-Coding RNAs: Insights from the Point of View of Structural Biology. Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2012, 13, 10268-10295.

AMA Style

Costa MC, Leitão AL, Enguita FJ. Biogenesis and Mechanism of Action of Small Non-Coding RNAs: Insights from the Point of View of Structural Biology. International Journal of Molecular Sciences. 2012; 13(8):10268-10295.

Chicago/Turabian Style

Costa, Marina C.; Leitão, Ana Lúcia; Enguita, Francisco J. 2012. "Biogenesis and Mechanism of Action of Small Non-Coding RNAs: Insights from the Point of View of Structural Biology." Int. J. Mol. Sci. 13, no. 8: 10268-10295.

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