Host-virus interaction: a new role for microRNAs

Scaria, Vinod and Hariharan, Manoj and Maiti, Souvik and Pillai, Beena and Brahmachari, Samir K. (2006) Host-virus interaction: a new role for microRNAs. Retrovirology, 3.

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MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a new class of 18–23 nucleotide long non-coding RNAs that play critical roles in a wide spectrum of biological processes. Recent reports also throw light into the role of microRNAs as critical effectors in the intricate host-pathogen interaction networks. Evidence suggests that both virus and hosts encode microRNAs. The exclusive dependence of viruses on the host cellular machinery for their propagation and survival also make them highly susceptible to the vagaries of the cellular environment like small RNA mediated interference. It also gives the virus an opportunity to fight and/or modulate the host to suite its needs. Thus the range of interactions possible through miRNA-mRNA cross-talk at the host-pathogen interface is large. These interactions can be further fine-tuned in the host by changes in gene expression, mutations and polymorphisms. In the pathogen, the high rate of mutations adds to the complexity of the interaction network. Though evidence regarding microRNA mediated cross-talk in viral infections is just emerging, it offers an immense opportunity not only to understand the intricacies of host- pathogen interactions, and possible explanations to viral tropism, latency and oncogenesis, but also to develop novel biomarkers and therapeutics.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: G Genome informatics > G1 Genome informatics (General)
Divisions: Faculty of Genome informatics and Structural Biology > School of Genome informatics
Depositing User: Raghu MV
Date Deposited: 27 Dec 2011 07:26
Last Modified: 27 Dec 2011 12:48

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