University of Massachusetts Medical School Faculty Publications


Perspective: The RNA exosome, cytokine gene regulation and links to autoimmunity

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Program in Innate Immunity; Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases and Immunology

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Animals; Autoimmune Diseases; Cytokines; Exosome Multienzyme Ribonuclease Complex; Gene Expression Regulation; Humans; RNA Processing, Post-Transcriptional; *Self Tolerance




The RNA exosome is a highly conserved exoribonuclease complex that is involved in RNA processing, quality control and turnover regulation. The exosome plays pleiotropic functions by recruiting different cofactors that regulate its target specificity. Recently, the exosome has been implicated in the regulation of immune processes including cytokine production and negative regulation of innate sensing of nucleic acids. Careful regulation of such mechanisms is critical to avoid a breakdown of self-tolerance and the pathogenesis of autoimmune disorders. This perspective briefly introduces the exosome, its its normal function in RNA biology and summarizes regulatory roles of the RNA exosome in immunity. Finally we discuss how dysregulation of exosome function can lead to autoimmune disease.


Autoimmune disease, Cytokines, Exosome, Innate immunity, RNA sensors

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Citation: Cytokine. 2015 Aug;74(2):175-80. doi: 10.1016/j.cyto.2015.03.005. Epub 2015 Mar 30. Link to article on publisher's site

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