TitleRNA Blot Analysis for the Detection and Quantification of Plant MicroRNAs.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsTirumalai V, Prasad M, Shivaprasad PV
JournalJ Vis Exp
Date Published2020 Jul 11

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are a class of endogenously expressed non-coding, ~21 nt small RNAs involved in the regulation of gene expression in both plants and animals. Most miRNAs act as negative switches of gene expression targeting key genes. In plants, primary miRNAs (pri-miRNAs) transcripts are generated by RNA polymerase II, and they form varying lengths of stable stem-loop structures called pre-miRNAs. An endonuclease, Dicer-like1, processes the pre-miRNAs into miRNA-miRNA* duplexes. One of the strands from miRNA-miRNA* duplex is selected and loaded onto Argonaute 1 protein or its homologs to mediate the cleavage of target mRNAs. Although miRNAs are key signaling molecules, their detection is often carried out by less than optimal PCR-based methods instead of a sensitive northern blot analysis. We describe a simple, reliable, and extremely sensitive northern method that is ideal for the quantification of miRNA levels with very high sensitivity, literally from any plant tissue. Additionally, this method can be used to confirm the size, stability and the abundance of miRNAs and their precursors.

Alternate JournalJ Vis Exp
PubMed ID32716394