Molecular Cell cover features research from Zamore lab

Study suggestion a revision to standard Ping-Pong model for piRNA gene silencing

By Jim Fessenden

UMass Medical School Communications

December 30, 2014
  A study from the Zamore lab featured on the cover of the Dec. 4 issue of Molecular Cell provides new insights into the biochemical mechanisms governing how piRNA target select genetic elements for silencing.
  A study from the Zamore lab provides new insights into the biochemical mechanisms governing how piRNAs target select genetic elements for silencing.

Featured on the cover of the Dec. 4 issue of Molecular Cell, a new study by Phillip D. Zamore, PhD, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, the Gretchen Stone Cook Chair in the Biomedical Sciences and professor of biochemistry & molecular pharmacology, provides new insights into the mechanism used by Piwi-interacting RNAs (piRNAs) by silencing transposons, a class of DNA sequences that can change position and “jump” around the genome and cause damage.

The Ping-Ping model of amplification proposed mechanism where primary piRNAs recognize complementary targets and cause the recruitment of piwi proteins. This results in the production of a secondary piRNA that targets and silences the transposon sequence.

This new work helps unify the biochemical mechanisms governing how piRNA and miRNA target select genetic elements for silencing.

Read the full article: http://www.cell.com/molecular-cell/abstract/S1097-2765(14)00826-0

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