MicroRNAs: The Potential Biomarkers in Plant Stress Response


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are endogenous small RNA regulatory molecules of approximate 20-24 nucleotides that are involved in regulating the intrinsic growth and development of organs in plants and animals as well as in maintaining the integrity of genomes. Past few years have witnessed an increase in research reports on the crucial role of miRNAs in plant stress response. Plant miRNAs regulate gene expression at the post-transcriptional level not only by suppression of mRNA translation but also by direct cleavage of the target mRNAs. This review starts with a brief overview on small RNAs including miRNAs, biogenesis of miRNA and focuses mainly on the various up and down-regulated plant miRNAs under different biotic and abiotic stresses showing advancement of studies about miRNA and their stress regulation pathway. This review explores the emerging role of miRNAs as potential biomarkers in plant stress responses.

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Bej, S. and Basak, J. (2014) MicroRNAs: The Potential Biomarkers in Plant Stress Response. American Journal of Plant Sciences, 5, 748-759. doi: 10.4236/ajps.2014.55089.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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