GSBS Student Publications


Genetic requirements for inheritance of RNAi in C. elegans

GSBS Program

Biochemistry & Molecular Pharmacology

UMMS Affiliation

Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; Program in Molecular Medicine; Department of Cell Biology



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

Animals; Caenorhabditis elegans; *Caenorhabditis elegans Proteins; Crosses, Genetic; DNA Transposable Elements; Female; *Gene Silencing; *Genes, Helminth; Helminth Proteins; Hermaphroditism; Male; Mutation; Phenotype; RNA, Double-Stranded; RNA, Helminth


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


In Caenorhabditis elegans, the introduction of double-stranded RNA triggers sequence-specific genetic interference (RNAi) that is transmitted to offspring. The inheritance properties associated with this phenomenon were examined. Transmission of the interference effect occurred through a dominant extragenic agent. The wild-type activities of the RNAi pathway genes rde-1 and rde-4 were required for the formation of this interfering agent but were not needed for interference thereafter. In contrast, the rde-2 and mut-7 genes were required downstream for interference. These findings provide evidence for germ line transmission of an extragenic sequence-specific silencing factor and implicate rde-1 and rde-4 in the formation of the inherited agent.

Rights and Permissions

Citation: Science. 2000 Mar 31;287(5462):2494-7.

Related Resources

Link to article in PubMed

Journal Title

Science (New York, N.Y.)

PubMed ID