Developmental Biology

Dicer in RNAi and Development

Science's STKE  25 Sep 2001:
Vol. 2001, Issue 101, pp. tw350
DOI: 10.1126/stke.2001.101.tw350

RNA interference (RNAi) is the process by which double-stranded RNA induces sequence-specific posttranscriptional gene silencing. The enzyme Dicer has been implicated in the generation of short interfering RNAs (siRNAs), which are thought to be the effectors of the gene silencing. Knight and Bass now provide genetic evidence in Caenorhabditis elegans that the ribonuclease III activity of Dicer is important for RNAi in vivo and that mutation of the dicer-1 gene causes sterility. Thus, Dicer seems to have a role in germ line development, or physiology, or both.

S. W. Knight, B. L. Bass, A role for the RNase III enzyme DCR-1 in RNA interference and germ line development in Caenorhabditis elegans. Science 293, 2269-2271 (2001). [Abstract] [Full Text]