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Mol Microbiol. 2017 Feb;103(3):387-397. doi: 10.1111/mmi.13558. Epub 2016 Nov 14.

Dual-function small regulatory RNAs in bacteria.

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Biologisch-Pharmazeutische Fakultät, Lehrstuhl für Genetik, Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena, AG Bakteriengenetik, Philosophenweg 12, Jena, D-07743, Germany.


Dual-function sRNAs are a subgroup of small regulatory RNAs that act on the one hand as base-pairing sRNAs to inhibit or activate target gene expression and on the other hand as peptide-encoding mRNAs that function either in the same or in another metabolic pathway. Here, we review and compare the five currently known and intensively characterized dual-function sRNAs with regard to their two functions, their biological role, their evolutionary conservation and their requirements for RNA chaperones. Furthermore, we summarize the data available on five potential dual-function sRNAs, whose base-pairing function is well established whereas the role of their encoded peptides has not yet been elucidated. In addition, we provide three examples for RNAs with more than one function that do not fall into the above-mentioned category. With the application of RNAseq, peptidomics and transcriptomics it can be expected that the number of dual-function sRNAs will considerably increase within the next years, thus enhancing our knowledge on the regulatory potential of these RNAs.

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