Post-transcriptional regulation in planarian stem cells.

Affiliation

Department of Biological and Medical Sciences, Oxford Brookes University, Gipsy Lane, Oxford, UK. Electronic address: [Email]

Abstract

Planarians are known for their immense regenerative abilities. A pluripotent stem cell population provides the cellular source for this process, as well as for the homeostatic cell turnover of the animals. These stem cells, known as neoblasts, present striking similarities at the morphological and molecular level to germ cells, but however, give rise to somatic tissue. Many RNA binding proteins known to be important for germ cell biology are also required for neoblast function, highlighting the importance of post-transcriptional regulation for stem cell control. Many of its aspects, including alternative splicing, alternative polyadenylation, translational control and mRNA deadenylation, as well as small RNAs such as microRNAs and piRNA are critical for stem cells. Their inhibition often abrogates both regeneration and cell turnover, resulting in lethality. Some of aspects of post-transcriptional regulation are conserved from planarian to mammalian stem cells.

Keywords

Neoblast,Planarian,Post-transcriptional regulation,RNA binding protein,Stem cell,