Plants chemically modify their mRNAs

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Science  04 Dec 2015:
Vol. 350, Issue 6265, pp. 1218-1219
DOI: 10.1126/science.350.6265.1218-d

When Arabidopsis plants respond to stress, they often chemically modify their RNA transcripts; for instance, adding methyl groups to specific ribonucleotides. Such changes can alter RNA function and stability. In order to characterize such modifications on RNAs transcribed from genes, Vandivier et al. performed a high-throughput annotation of modified ribonucleotides within mRNA. They found that modifications were not random but rather distributed to specific types of RNAs, such as on degrading transcripts and long noncoding RNAs, or specific sites within transcripts, such as regions that regulate RNA splicing. Overall, their studies suggest that marks regulate the stability of mRNA transcripts.

Plant Cell 10. 1105/tpc. 15. 00591 (2015).

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