Redirection of silencing targets by adenosine-to-inosine editing of miRNAs

Science. 2007 Feb 23;315(5815):1137-40. doi: 10.1126/science.1138050.


Primary transcripts of certain microRNA (miRNA) genes are subject to RNA editing that converts adenosine to inosine. However, the importance of miRNA editing remains largely undetermined. Here we report that tissue-specific adenosine-to-inosine editing of miR-376 cluster transcripts leads to predominant expression of edited miR-376 isoform RNAs. One highly edited site is positioned in the middle of the 5'-proximal half "seed" region critical for the hybridization of miRNAs to targets. We provide evidence that the edited miR-376 RNA silences specifically a different set of genes. Repression of phosphoribosyl pyrophosphate synthetase 1, a target of the edited miR-376 RNA and an enzyme involved in the uric-acid synthesis pathway, contributes to tight and tissue-specific regulation of uric-acid levels, revealing a previously unknown role for RNA editing in miRNA-mediated gene silencing.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • 3' Untranslated Regions
  • Adenosine / metabolism*
  • Adenosine Deaminase / genetics
  • Adenosine Deaminase / metabolism
  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Brain / metabolism
  • HeLa Cells
  • Humans
  • Inosine / metabolism*
  • Liver / metabolism
  • Mice
  • MicroRNAs / chemistry
  • MicroRNAs / genetics
  • MicroRNAs / metabolism*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Nucleic Acid Conformation
  • Organ Specificity
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases / genetics
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases / metabolism
  • RNA Editing*
  • RNA Interference*
  • RNA-Binding Proteins
  • Ribose-Phosphate Pyrophosphokinase / genetics
  • Ribose-Phosphate Pyrophosphokinase / metabolism
  • Uric Acid / metabolism


  • 3' Untranslated Regions
  • MicroRNAs
  • RNA-Binding Proteins
  • Uric Acid
  • Inosine
  • Ttk protein, mouse
  • Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases
  • Ribose-Phosphate Pyrophosphokinase
  • ADARB1 protein, human
  • Adenosine Deaminase
  • Adenosine