Post-transcriptional regulation and non-coding RNA:
We are in the midst of a new genomic era, where high-throughput sequencing approaches and genome engineering are revolutionizing research in the biological sciences. These technological advancements promise to transform our understanding of gene regulation. The biologist of the not-so-distant future needs to harness the skill sets associated with these new technologies (both wet-lab and dry-lab/computational skills).
Enabled by transcriptome sequencing, novel species of RNA have recently been discovered to be abundantly expressed in the nervous systems of animals ranging from fruit flies to humans. The majority of the sequence within these RNA molecules are not predicted to encode proteins. Such non-coding regions that the Miura Lab explores includes extended 3'UTR mRNA isoforms and circular RNAs.
The mission of the laboratory is decipher how these novel RNA molecules are regulated and identify their physiological roles in cells. The biological roles of extended 3'UTRs and circular RNAs remain for the most part unexplored. We are particularly interested in how these RNAs might be involved in neurological disease and during aging.
Projects in the lab include the use of Drosophila, mice and mammalian cell culture. High-throughput, genome-wide sequencing approaches will employed. Exciting new genome editing approaches (CRISPR/CAS) will be exploited to understand the functional roles in vivo of non-coding RNAs.