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Adv Exp Med Biol. 2013;768:5-21. doi: 10.1007/978-1-4614-5107-5_2.

The discovery of GW bodies.

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Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Calgary, Calgary, Canada.


Human autoantibodies were a key to the discovery of GW bodies and their integral protein, GW182. This publication marks the tenth anniversary of the discovery of GW182. As it turns out, the discovery of GW182 was quite timely because it coincided with the elucidation of the RNA interference (RNAi) pathway, which is now known to have a major role in post-transcriptional gene regulation. Following our publication of the essential features of GW182 in 2002, laboratories from around the world began investigations that led to the elucidation of the role of GW182 in RNAi and other pathways of mRNA processing and degradation. This chapter reviews the discovery of GW182 and the description of GWB and some of the observations that followed that still remain to be elucidated.

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