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Frontiers in plant science

Survey of High Throughput RNA-Seq Data Reveals Potential Roles for lncRNAs during Development and Stress Response in Bread Wheat.


PMID 28649263

Abstract

Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are a family of regulatory RNAs that play essential role in the various developmental processes and stress responses. Recent advances in sequencing technology and computational methods enabled identification and characterization of lncRNAs in certain plant species, but they are less known in Triticum aestivum (bread wheat). Herein, we analyzed 52 RNA seq data (>30 billion reads) and identified 44,698 lncRNAs in T. aestivum genome, which were characterized in comparison to the coding sequences (mRNAs). Similar to the mRNAs, lncRNAs were also derived from each sub-genome and chromosome, and showed tissue developmental stage specific and differential expression, as well. The modulated expression of lncRNAs during abiotic stresses like heat, drought, and salt indicated their putative role in stress response. The co-expression of lncRNAs with vital mRNAs including various transcription factors and enzymes involved in Abscisic acid (ABA) biosynthesis, and gene ontology mapping inferred their regulatory roles in numerous biological processes. A few lncRNAs were predicted as precursor (19 lncRNAs), while some as target mimics (1,047 lncRNAs) of known miRNAs involved in various regulatory functions. The results suggested numerous functions of lncRNAs in T. aestivum, and unfolded the opportunities for functional characterization of individual lncRNA in future studies.

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