Dosage-sensitive miRNAs trigger modulation of gene expression during genomic imbalance in maize

Nat Commun. 2022 May 31;13(1):3014. doi: 10.1038/s41467-022-30704-x.


The genomic imbalance caused by varying the dosage of individual chromosomes or chromosomal segments (aneuploidy) has more detrimental effects than altering the dosage of complete chromosome sets (ploidy). Previous analysis of maize (Zea mays) aneuploids revealed global modulation of gene expression both on the varied chromosome (cis) and the remainder of the genome (trans). However, little is known regarding the role of microRNAs (miRNAs) under genomic imbalance. Here, we report the impact of aneuploidy and polyploidy on the expression of miRNAs. In general, cis miRNAs in aneuploids present a predominant gene-dosage effect, whereas trans miRNAs trend toward the inverse level, although other types of responses including dosage compensation, increased effect, and decreased effect also occur. By contrast, polyploids show less differential miRNA expression than aneuploids. Significant correlations between expression levels of miRNAs and their targets are identified in aneuploids, indicating the regulatory role of miRNAs on gene expression triggered by genomic imbalance.

Publication types

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

MeSH terms

  • Aneuploidy
  • Gene Expression
  • Genomics
  • MicroRNAs* / genetics
  • Polyploidy
  • Zea mays* / genetics


  • MicroRNAs