Gracjan Michlewski Laboratory

Regulation of MicroRNA Processing and Function

 

In all living organisms there is a process by which the genetic information, carried in the genes, is translated into the main building blocks of life – proteins. This process is mediated by RNA molecules, which play essential roles as messengers between the genes and the proteins.

Recently, it has been recognized that RNAs are not only mere messengers but also serve as active elements that control various processes in human cells. It has been discovered that a group of small RNAs, called microRNAs (miRs, miRNAs), play a central role in the control of protein production. They are required for normal development and functioning of the human body. Moreover, microRNA levels are frequently changed in many human disorders, such as cancer, which suggest their contribution towards pathology and provide potential targets for new therapies.

The major goal of my lab is to understand the contribution of microRNAs in the control of protein production. In particular, we are interested in how microRNAs are generated and what are the mechanisms that control their levels in normal and disease conditions.