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The mission of the RNA Bioscience Initiative (RBI) is to cultivate a vibrant center of discovery and innovation in RNA biology, informatics, diagnostics, and therapy. Our goal is to provide a fluid pipeline from basic to clinical RNA research at the Anschutz Medical Campus.
Researchers from Aarhus University and Berkeley Laboratory have used an RNA Origami technique to successfully construct specific RNA shapes, including nanoscale rectangles, cylinders, and satellites. Detailed examination of the structures by cryo-EM allowed investigators to establish "rules" for RNA folding that enable refinement of the structures. The hope is that the creation of RNA nanostructures that can be used as medicine is coming nearer to fruition.
RBI's Dr. Matt Taliaferro writes about his latest research for The Conversation, an online news organization "dedicated to unlocking the knowledge of experts for the public good". In this case, to make make complex scientific ideas understandable for non-scientists. Here, Taliaferro describes cells as cities organized in districts that can be distinguished from one another by unique mRNA sequences. These RNA "Zip Codes" are recognized by proteins that deliver them to particular cellular addresses.
March 1, 2023
RBI has partnered with the Colorado RNA Club to revive the annual Rocky Mountain RNA Symposium that was derailed by the COVID19 pandemic. The 2023 symposium will be held on Friday, April 14th in the Elliman Conference Center on the CU Anschutz Medical Campus. This one day event will feature rising stars in the RNA world – Ariel Bazzini, PhD (Stowers Institute), Susan Shao, PhD (Harvard), Siggy Nachtergaele, PhD (Yale), and Derrick Morton, PhD (USC). Registration for this FREE meeting is now OPEN!
March 6, 2023
Conner J Langeberg, Parker J Nichols, Morkos A Henen, Quentin Vicens, Beat Vögeli
The Zα domain of ADARp150 is critical for proper Z-RNA substrate binding and is a key factor in the type-I interferon response pathway. Two point-mutations in this domain (N173S and P193A), which cause neurodegenerative disorders, are linked to decreased A-to-I editing in disease models. To understand this phenomenon at the molecular level, we biophysically and structurally characterized these two mutated domains, revealing that they bind Z-RNA with a decreased affinity. Complete Abstract
March 3, 2023
Raeann Goering, Ankita Arora, Megan C Pockalny, J Matthew Taliaferro
RNA molecules are localized to specific subcellular regions through interactions between RNA regulatory elements and RNA binding proteins (RBPs). Generally, our knowledge of the mechanistic details behind the localization of a given RNA is restricted to a particular cell type. Here, we show that RNA/RBP interactions that regulate RNA localization in one cell type predictably regulate localization in other cell types with vastly different morphologies. To determine transcriptome-wide RNA spatial distributions across the apicobasal axis of human intestinal epithelial cells, we used our recently developed RNA proximity labeling technique, Halo-seq. We found that mRNAs encoding ribosomal proteins (RP mRNAs)... Complete Abstract
The RBI has made CU Anschutz a clear hub of RNA biology expertise, raising the status of the university and its researchers in the eyes of scientists at institutions around the country and the world. The RBI sets CU Anschutz up as a leader in the exciting and groundbreaking field of RNA biology.
Amy Campbell, PhD
RBI Co-Director, David Bentley, PhD, was interviewed by 9News reporter Anusha Roy and featured on Next with Kyle Clark. In this piece Dr. Bentley expertly describes the future of mRNA technology and its possible therapeutic uses beyond the COVID vaccine.