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Plant Mol Biol. 1996 Oct;32(1-2):89-106.

RNA structure and the regulation of gene expression.

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Institut für Physikalische Biologie, Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf, Germany.


RNA secondary and tertiary structure is involved in post-transcriptional regulation of gene expression either by exposing specific sequences or through the formation of specific structural motifs. An overview of RNA secondary and tertiary structures known from biophysical studies is followed by a review of examples of the elements of RNA processing, mRNA stability and translation of the messenger. These structural elements comprise sense-antisense double-stranded RNA, hairpin and stem-loop structures, and more complex structures such as bifurcations, pseudoknots and triple-helical elements. Metastable structures formed during RNA folding pathway are also discussed. The examples presented are mostly chosen from plant systems, plant viruses, and viroids. Examples from bacteria or fungi are discussed only when unique regulatory properties of RNA structures have been elucidated in these systems.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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