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Nature. 2009 Sep 10;461(7261):206-11. doi: 10.1038/nature08452.

Implications of chimaeric non-co-linear transcripts.

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  • Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, 1 Bungtown Road, Cold Spring Harbor, New York 11724, USA. gingeras@cshl.edu


Deep sequencing of 'transcriptomes'--the collection of all RNA transcripts produced at a given time--from worms to humans reveals that some transcripts are composed of sequence segments that are not co-linear, with pieces of sequence coming from distant regions of DNA, even different chromosomes. Some of these 'chimaeric' transcripts are formed by genetic rearrangements, but others arise during post-transcriptional events. The 'trans-splicing' process in lower eukaryotes is well understood, but events in higher eukaryotes are not. The existence of such chimaeric RNAs has far-reaching implications for the potential information content of genomes and the way it is arranged.

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