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The effects of nested miRNAs and their host genes on immune defense against Bacillus thuringiensis infection in Caenorhabditis elegans

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  • Alejandra Zárate-Potes
  • Wentao Yang
  • Bentje Andresen
  • Rania Nakad
  • Daniela Haase
  • Philip Rosenstiel
  • Katja Dierking
  • Hinrich Schulenburg
Article number104144
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>31/10/2021
<mark>Journal</mark>Developmental and comparative immunology
Number of pages8
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date3/06/21
<mark>Original language</mark>English


microRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNA-molecules that influence translation by binding to the target gene mRNA. Many miRNAs are found in nested arrangements within larger protein-coding host genes. miRNAs and host genes in a nested arrangement are often transcribed simultaneously, which may indicate that both have similar functions. miRNAs have been implicated in regulating defense responses against pathogen infection in C. elegans and in mammals. Here, we asked if miRNAs in nested arrangements and their host genes are involved in the C. elegans response against infection with Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt). We performed miRNA sequencing and subsequently focused on four nested miRNA-host gene arrangements for a functional genetic analysis. We identified mir-58.1 and mir-2 as negative regulators of C. elegans resistance to Bt infection. However, we did not find any miRNA/host gene pair in which both contribute to defense against Bt.