Transposable elements (TEs) are major components of the intergenic regions of the genome. However, TE transposition has the potential to threaten the reproductive fitness of the organism; therefore, organisms have evolved specialized molecular systems to sense and repress the expression of TEs to stop them from jumping to other genomic loci. Emerging evidence suggests that Argonaute proteins play a critical role in this process, in collaboration with two types of cellular small RNAs: PIWI-interacting RNAs (piRNAs) of the germline and endogenous small interfering RNAs (endo-siRNAs) of the soma, both of which are transcribed from TEs themselves.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Molecular Biology
- Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
- Developmental Biology
- Cell Biology