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Silencing RNAs: organisers and coordinators of complexity in eukaryotic organisms

Objective

A recently discovered layer of gene regulation in eukaryotic organisms employs small regulatory RNAs (miRNAs and siRNAs). These RNAs are 20-28 nucleotides long and are produced by Dicer ribonucleases acting on double-stranded RNA precursors. Together with an effector protein complex, they scan for complementary RNA or DNA so that expression of these targeted molecules is silenced at the transcriptional or posttranscriptional levels. These short RNAs influence gene expression during growth and development and initiate epigenetic changes to DNA and chromatin. SIROCCO will characterize the full complement of miRNAs and siRNAs in animals and plants. Using bioinformatics, genomics, biochemistry, cell biology and genetics, the sortium members will reveal how these RNAs are produced and processed, how they are transported and how they target specific genes and RNAs for silencing. SIROCCO will investigate the miRNA and siRNA profiles associated with development, with phenotypic divergence within populations, and with diseased states including cancer. The functional genomics of silencing RNAs will be addressed by up- or down-regulation of miRNA and siRNA species. There will also be an assessment of miRNA and siRNA regulatory networks and their interaction with other cellular trol mechanisms.
The outputs of SIROCCO will include databases of silencing RNA sequence and function in several organisms, new technologies for detection and manipulation of these RNAs, and information that will allow siRNA and miRNA profiles to be used as molecular markers and diagnostic methods for natural biological variation including the perturbations associated with disease. SIROCCO will also identify potential targets of disease therapy amongst the components of the small RNA silencing systems.
Finally, insights generated in SIROCCO will improve the specificity with which small RNAs can be employed as therapeutic tools.

Call for proposal

FP6-2005-LIFESCIHEALTH-6
See other projects for this call

Coordinator

THE CHANCELLOR, MASTERS AND SCHOLARS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE
Address
The Old Schools, Trinity Lane
Cambridge
United Kingdom

Participants (23)

AGRICULTURAL BIOTECHNOLOGY CENTER
Hungary
Address
Szent-gyorgyi Albert 4.
411 Godollo
CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE
France
Address
3 Rue Michel Ange
Paris
NOVARTIS FORSCHUNGSSTIFTUNG, ZWEIGNIEDERLASSUNG FRIEDRICH MIESCHER INSTITUTE FOR BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH
Switzerland
Address
Maulbeerstrasse 66
Basel
HUBRECHT LABORATORY / KNAW
Netherlands
Address
Uppsalalaan 8
85164 Utrecht
MAX-PLANCK-GESELLSCHAFT ZUR FORDERUNG DER WISSENSCHAFTEN E.V.
Germany
Address
Hofgartenstrasse 8
Munchen
UNIVERSITY OF DUNDEE
United Kingdom
Address
Nethergate
Dundee
UNIVERSITY OF EAST ANGLIA
United Kingdom
Address
Earlham Road
Norwich
EUROPEAN MOLECULAR BIOLOGY LABORATORY
Germany
Address
Meyerhofstrasse 1
Heidelberg
EUROPEAN MOLECULAR BIOLOGY LABORATORY
Germany
Address
Meyerhofstrasse 1
Heidelberg
UNIVERSITY OF ROME "LA SAPIENZA"
Italy
Address
P.le A. Moro 5
Roma
THE SAINSBURY LABORATORY
United Kingdom
Address
Norwich Research Park, Colney
Norwich
BIOGEM S.C.A R.L.
Italy
Address
Via Camporeale
Ariano Irpino
UNIVERSITY OF AARHUS
Denmark
Address
Nordre Ringgade 1
Aarhus C
JOHN INNES CENTRE
United Kingdom
Address
Norwich Research Park, Colney
Norwich
RLP AGROSCIENCE GMBH, ALPLANTA-INSTITUTE FOR PLANT RESEARCH
Germany
Address
Breitenweg 71
Neustadt
EXIQON A/S
Denmark
Address
Bygstubben 9
Vedbaek
TEMASEK LIFE SCIENCES LABORATORY
Singapore
Address
1 Research Link, National University Of Singapore
Na
CEINGE BIOTECNOLOGIE AVANZATE SCARL
Italy
Address
Via Communale Margherita 482
Napoli
INTERNA TECHNOLOGIES B.V.
Netherlands
Address
Prof. Bronkhorstlaan 10-Xi
Bilthoven
OÜ QURETEC
Estonia
Address
Ülikooli 6A
Tartu
EIDGENÖSSISCHE TECHNISCHE HOCHSCHULE ZÜRICH
Switzerland
Address
Rämistrasse 101
Zürich
BIOMEDICAL SCIENCES INSTITUTES
Singapore
Address
20 Biopolis Way, #07-01 Centros
Singapore
CENTRE DE REGULACIO GENOMICA
Spain
Address
Passeig Maritim, 37-49
Barcelona