EcTop Non-coding RNAs as versatile regulators of cellular processes
The recent discovery that large parts of the genome are transcribed into non-coding (nc)RNAs has revolutionized our understanding of how cells regulate the stability, transmission and expression of their genetic information. Both small and long ncRNAs are now known to control chromatin structure and transcription in the nucleus, as well as mRNA translation and stability in the cytoplasm. Yet, while the importance of ncRNAs as versatile regulators of cellular processes in health and disease is increasingly recognized, the mechanisms underlying ncRNA action remain ill understood. In EcTop5, a group of scientists working actively on ncRNA in Heidelberg has started to build a network and identified two specific areas of collaborative research: Team A will focus on elucidating the molecular mechanisms by which ncRNAs are generated and exert their different functions. Team B will characterize the role of ncRNAs in cellular physiology and disease models. The research proposed in this application will promote our understanding of fundamental aspects of ncRNAs biogenesis, structure, regulation and function.