Epigenetic Regulation by Heritable RNA

Liebers, Reinhard; Rassoulzadegan, Minoo; Lyko, Frank
April 2014
PLoS Genetics;Apr2014, Vol. 10 Issue 4, p1
Academic Journal
Genomic concepts are based on the assumption that phenotypes arise from the expression of genetic variants. However, the presence of non-Mendelian inheritance patterns provides a direct challenge to this view and suggests an important role for alternative mechanisms of gene regulation and inheritance. Over the past few years, a highly complex and diverse network of noncoding RNAs has been discovered. Research in animal models has shown that RNAs can be inherited and that RNA methyltransferases can be important for the transmission and expression of modified phenotypes in the next generation. We discuss possible mechanisms of RNA-mediated inheritance and the role of these mechanisms for human health and disease.


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