Control of mRNA turnover: implication of cytoplasmic RNA granules

Semin Cell Dev Biol. 2014 Oct;34:15-23. doi: 10.1016/j.semcdb.2014.05.013. Epub 2014 Jun 16.


The control of mRNA turnover is essential for the cell to rationalize its mRNA content both under physiological conditions and upon stress. Several mechanisms involved in the control of mRNA turnover have been elucidated. These include surveillance mechanisms such as nonsense-mediated decay, non-stop mediated decay and non-go-mediated decay that eliminate aberrant mRNAs, and regulatory mechanisms including AU-mediated decay, GU-mediated decay, and CDE-mediated decay that ensure mRNA plasticity. In general, the mechanisms of RNA decay rely on interactions between specific cis-acting RNA elements and selected RNA-binding proteins that either prevent the degradation of mRNA targets or induce the recruitment of decaying effectors leading to mRNA degradation. Formation of cytoplasmic RNA granules including processing bodies, stress granules, UV granules, and exosome granules have recently emerged as an additional mechanism that control mRNA turnover of selected mRNAs. Here we will review briefly review the main mechanisms that control mRNA decay and highlight possible implication of RNA granules in such mechanisms.

Keywords: Cytoplasmic RNA granules; Mechanisms of mRNA decay; RNA-binding proteins; Stress conditions.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cytoplasmic Granules / metabolism*
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Humans
  • RNA Stability
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • RNA, Messenger / metabolism*
  • RNA-Binding Proteins / physiology
  • Stress, Physiological


  • RNA, Messenger
  • RNA-Binding Proteins