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J Biomed Inform. 2009 Apr;42(2):382-9. doi: 10.1016/j.jbi.2008.11.002. Epub 2008 Nov 13.

Interspliced transcription chimeras: neglected pathological mechanism infiltrating gene accession queries?

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Institute of Medical Technology, University of Tampere, Finland.


Over half of the DNA of mammalian genomes is transcribed, and one of the emerging enigmas in the field of RNA research is intergenic splicing or transcription induced chimerism. We argue that fused low-copy-number transcripts constitute neglected pathological mechanism akin to copy number variation, due to loss of stoichiometric subunit ratios in protein complexes. An obstacle for transcriptomics meta-analysis of published microarrays is the traditional nomenclature of merged transcript neighbors under same accession codes. Tandem transcripts cover 4-20% of genomes but are only loosely overlapping in population. They were most enriched in systems medicine annotations concerning neurology, thalassemia and genital disorders in the GeneGo Inc. MetaCore-MetaDrug(TM) knowledgebase, evaluated with external randomizations here. Clinical transcriptomics is good news since new disease etiologies offer new remedies. We identified homeotic HOX-transfactors centered around BMI-1, the Grb2 adaptor network, the kallikrein system, and thalassemia RNA surveillance as vulnerable hotspot chimeras. As a cure, RNA interference would require verification of chimerism from symptomatic tissue contra healthy control tissue from the same patient.

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