Customization of Artificial MicroRNA Design.
Methods in molecular biology, January 2017
Tien Van Vu, Vinh Nang Do
RNAi approaches, including microRNA (miRNA) regulatory pathway, offer great tools for functional characterization of unknown genes. Moreover, the applications of artificial microRNA (amiRNA) in the field of plant transgenesis have also been advanced to engineer pathogen-resistant or trait-improved transgenic plants. Until now, despite the high potency of amiRNA approach, no commercial plant cultivar expressing amiRNAs with improved traits has been released yet. Beside the issues of biosafety policies, the specificity and efficacy of amiRNAs are of major concerns. Sufficient cares should be taken for the specificity and efficacy of amiRNAs due to their potential off-target effects and other issues relating to in vivo expression of pre-amiRNAs. For these reasons, the proper design of amiRNAs with the lowest off-target possibility is very important for successful applications of the approach in plant. Therefore, there are many studies with the aim to improve the amiRNA design and amiRNA expressing backbones for obtaining better specificity and efficacy. However, the requirement for an efficient reference for the design is still needed. In the present chapter, we attempt to summarize and discuss all the major concerns relating to amiRNA design with the hope to provide a significant guideline for this approach.
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