Post-transcriptional regulation of inflammation by RNA-binding proteins via cis-elements of mRNAs

J Biochem. 2019 Nov 1;166(5):375-382. doi: 10.1093/jb/mvz067.


In human genome, there are approximately 1,500 RNA-binding proteins (RBPs). They can regulate mRNA stability or translational efficiency via ribosomes and these processes are known as 'post-transcriptional regulation'. Accumulating evidences indicate that post-transcriptional regulation is the determinant of the accurate levels of cytokines mRNAs. While transcriptional regulation of cytokines mRNAs has been well studied and found to be important for the rapid induction of mRNA and regulation of the acute phase of inflammation, post-transcriptional regulation by RBPs is essential for resolving inflammation in the later phase, and their dysfunction may lead to severe autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis or systemic lupus erythematosus. For post-transcriptional regulation, RBPs recognize and directly bind to cis-regulatory elements in 3' untranslated region of mRNAs such as AU-rich or constitutive decay elements and play various roles. In this review, we summarize the recent findings regarding the role of RBPs in the regulation of inflammation.

Keywords: RNA-binding protein; chronic inflammation; cis-regulatory element; post-transcriptional regulation; translation.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / genetics*
  • Inflammation / immunology
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics*
  • RNA-Binding Proteins / genetics
  • RNA-Binding Proteins / immunology
  • RNA-Binding Proteins / metabolism*
  • Transcription, Genetic / genetics*


  • RNA, Messenger
  • RNA-Binding Proteins