Evidence that siRNAs function as guides, not primers, in the Drosophila and human RNAi pathways
Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology
Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences
In Drosophila, two features of small interfering RNA (siRNA) structure--5' phosphates and 3' hydroxyls--are reported to be essential for RNA interference (RNAi). Here, we show that as in Drosophila, a 5' phosphate is required for siRNA function in human HeLa cells. In contrast, we find no evidence in flies or humans for a role in RNAi for the siRNA 3' hydroxyl group. Our in vitro data suggest that in both flies and mammals, each siRNA guides endonucleolytic cleavage of the target RNA at a single site. We conclude that the underlying mechanism of RNAi is conserved between flies and mammals and that RNA-dependent RNA polymerases are not required for RNAi in these organisms.
DOI of Published Version
Mol Cell. 2002 Sep;10(3):537-48.
Schwarz DS, Hutvagner G, Haley B, Zamore PD. (2002). Evidence that siRNAs function as guides, not primers, in the Drosophila and human RNAi pathways. GSBS Student Publications. https://doi.org/10.1016/S1097-2765(02)00651-2. Retrieved from https://escholarship.umassmed.edu/gsbs_sp/1085