Loss of miR-210 leads to progressive retinal degeneration in Drosophila melanogaster

Life Sci Alliance. 2019 Jan 22;2(1):e201800149. doi: 10.26508/lsa.201800149. Print 2019 Feb.


miRNAs are small, non-coding RNAs that regulate gene expression post-transcriptionally. We used small RNA sequencing to identify tissue-specific miRNAs in the adult brain, thorax, gut, and fat body of Drosophila melanogaster One of the most brain-specific miRNAs that we identified was miR-210, an evolutionarily highly conserved miRNA implicated in the regulation of hypoxia in mammals. In Drosophila, we show that miR-210 is specifically expressed in sensory organs, including photoreceptors. miR-210 knockout mutants are not sensitive toward hypoxia but show progressive degradation of photoreceptor cells, accompanied by decreased photoreceptor potential, demonstrating an important function of miR-210 in photoreceptor maintenance and survival.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Base Sequence
  • Cell Hypoxia / genetics
  • Cell Survival / genetics
  • Drosophila melanogaster / genetics*
  • Gene Expression Regulation / genetics
  • Gene Knockout Techniques
  • HEK293 Cells
  • High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing
  • Humans
  • MicroRNAs / genetics*
  • Photoreceptor Cells, Vertebrate / metabolism
  • Retinal Degeneration / genetics*
  • Sequence Analysis, RNA


  • MicroRNAs