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Examples of short RNAs that bind proteins

sRNAs hairpins

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#1 moonfleet



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Posted 30 September 2014 - 04:02 PM

Hello everyone,

I am new to the forum, this is my first post and I hope I am posting in the right section. I am actually a computational biolgist and hence pard me if my question description is a bit off-note, my curiosity is driving me on


A bit of background and context:
In bacteria, a regulatory protein termed CsrA binds certain structures in the UTR regions of genes and prevents their translation. These structures are short hairpin-like and all have AGGA nucleotides in the exposed part. There are sRNAs that isolate the protein from its targets, a common feature of these sRNAs is that they have several repetitive hairpins that more or less display AGGA nucleotides in the exposed part. So basically, the sRNAs mimic the structures on the targets of the proteins and that makes them potent competitors for protein binding against the genes actually targeted by the protein. By relying on this mimickry the sRNAs bind CsrA, isolate it from its targets and remove its suppression on gene translation.

My question:

Are there any other examples that illustrate similar mechanisms of analogy/mimickry of sRNAs to protein targets ?

What I tried
I've skimmed through a lot of literature to identify other similar systems in bacteria where sRNAs have conserved repetitive structures but to no avail. I hope someone with deeper experience directs me to such examples in any living organism, preferrably bacteria but I am open to suggestion.
I found CRISPRs but these are  DNA based, I have come across few other cis-acting sRNAs which target mRNAs and aren't protein-binding. So could it be the case that sRNA mimickers aren't very pervasive in bacteria after all ?!

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