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Long Non-Coding RNAs in the Regulation of Gene Expression: Physiology and Disease

Laboratório de Fisiologia de Tripanossomatídeos, Instituto de Biociências, Departamento de Fisiologia, Universidade de São Paulo, São Paulo 05508-090, Brazil
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Non-Coding RNA 2019, 5(1), 17; https://doi.org/10.3390/ncrna5010017
Received: 20 December 2018 / Revised: 11 February 2019 / Accepted: 12 February 2019 / Published: 17 February 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Non-Coding RNAs: Variations and Disease)
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Abstract

The identification of RNAs that are not translated into proteins was an important breakthrough, defining the diversity of molecules involved in eukaryotic regulation of gene expression. These non-coding RNAs can be divided into two main classes according to their length: short non-coding RNAs, such as microRNAs (miRNAs), and long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs). The lncRNAs in association with other molecules can coordinate several physiological processes and their dysfunction may impact in several pathologies, including cancer and infectious diseases. They can control the flux of genetic information, such as chromosome structure modulation, transcription, splicing, messenger RNA (mRNA) stability, mRNA availability, and post-translational modifications. Long non-coding RNAs present interaction domains for DNA, mRNAs, miRNAs, and proteins, depending on both sequence and secondary structure. The advent of new generation sequencing has provided evidences of putative lncRNAs existence; however, the analysis of transcriptomes for their functional characterization remains a challenge. Here, we review some important aspects of lncRNA biology, focusing on their role as regulatory elements in gene expression modulation during physiological and disease processes, with implications in host and pathogens physiology, and their role in immune response modulation. View Full-Text
Keywords: long non-coding RNA; gene expression; nuclear architecture; chromosome; microRNA; physiology; infectious diseases; biomarkers long non-coding RNA; gene expression; nuclear architecture; chromosome; microRNA; physiology; infectious diseases; biomarkers
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).
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Fernandes, J.C.R.; Acuña, S.M.; Aoki, J.I.; Floeter-Winter, L.M.; Muxel, S.M. Long Non-Coding RNAs in the Regulation of Gene Expression: Physiology and Disease. Non-Coding RNA 2019, 5, 17.

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