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Nat Rev Mol Cell Biol. 2006 Dec;7(12):919-31.

Editor meets silencer: crosstalk between RNA editing and RNA interference.

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  • 1The Wistar Institute, Department of Gene Expression and Regulation, 3601 Spruce Street, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19104-4268, USA.


The most prevalent type of RNA editing is mediated by ADAR (adenosine deaminase acting on RNA) enzymes, which convert adenosines to inosines (a process known as A-->I RNA editing) in double-stranded (ds)RNA substrates. A-->I RNA editing was long thought to affect only selected transcripts by altering the proteins they encode. However, genome-wide screening has revealed numerous editing sites within inverted Alu repeats in introns and untranslated regions. Also, recent evidence indicates that A-->I RNA editing crosstalks with RNA-interference pathways, which, like A-->I RNA editing, involve dsRNAs. A-->I RNA editing therefore seems to have additional functions, including the regulation of retrotransposons and gene silencing, which adds a new urgency to the challenges of fully understanding ADAR functions.

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