RNA Editing

Selection may influence transcriptional variation

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Science  19 Aug 2016:
Vol. 353, Issue 6301, pp. 787-788
DOI: 10.1126/science.353.6301.787-d

Posttranscriptional modifications, including changing an adenosine (A) to an inosine (I), may affect the translation of RNA transcripts into proteins. Yu et al. examined the extent and conservation or divergence of A-to-I editing across the genomes of seven Drosophila species. Editing occurred most commonly as nonconserved events observed only in a single gene from a gene family within a species. Positive selection was identified in cases where multiple genes within a gene family were edited across species; these also showed enrichment for function in the neural system. This suggests that editing may be selected for developmental variation.

PLOS Genet. 10.1371/journal. pgen.1006191 (2016).

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