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MicroRNAs: potential targets for developing stress-tolerant crops

Chaudhary, Saurabh, Grover, Atul and Sharma, Prakash Chand 2021. MicroRNAs: potential targets for developing stress-tolerant crops. Life 11 (4) , pp. 289-309. 10.3390/life11040289

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Crop yield is challenged every year worldwide by changing climatic conditions. The forecasted climatic scenario urgently demands stress-tolerant crop varieties to feed the ever-increasing global population. Molecular breeding and genetic engineering approaches have been frequently exploited for developing crops with desired agronomic traits. Recently, microRNAs (miRNAs) have emerged as powerful molecules, which potentially serve as expression markers during stress conditions. The miRNAs are small non-coding endogenous RNAs, usually 20–24 nucleotides long, which mediate post-transcriptional gene silencing and fine-tune the regulation of many abiotic- and biotic-stress responsive genes in plants. The miRNAs usually function by specifically pairing with the target mRNAs, inducing their cleavage or repressing their translation. This review focuses on the exploration of the functional role of miRNAs in regulating plant responses to abiotic and biotic stresses. Moreover, a methodology is also discussed to mine stress-responsive miRNAs from the enormous amount of transcriptome data available in the public domain generated using next-generation sequencing (NGS). Considering the functional role of miRNAs in mediating stress responses, these molecules may be explored as novel targets for engineering stress-tolerant crop varieties.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Publisher: MDPI
ISSN: 2075-1729
Funders: NA
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 21 May 2021
Date of Acceptance: 26 March 2021
Last Modified: 05 May 2023 00:07

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