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1 Q&A 9749 Views Apr 20, 2019
Northern blot is a molecular biology technique that can detect, quantify, and determine the molecular weight of RNA. Recently, we published a protocol utilizing near-infrared (IR) fluorescent probes in Northern blot (irNorthern). Our method is as sensitive as other non-radioactive methods but is more straightforward and versatile. Additionally, we found that IR-labeled probes can be used to multiplex or detect different species of RNA at the same time. Here we describe three methods for generating an IR-labeled probe as well as how to perform irNorthern blot. In conclusion, our irNorthern protocol offers a convenient method for RNA detection.
0 Q&A 10143 Views Feb 20, 2017
miRNA are short non-coding RNA which inhibit translation of mRNA. miRNA regulate several cellular processes. Certain miRNA are known to induce oncogenesis. miRNA can be measured by real-time PCR and be imaged using a combination of in situ hybridization (ISH) and quantum dots (QD). The advantage of using quantum dots is that several miRNA can be simultaneously measured using multiplexed QD. Additionally, miRNA can be visualized in different regions of the tissue. Since miRNA are biomarkers of various disease states, miRNA can be visualized and quantitated in tissue sections for diagnostic and prognostic purposes. Here we describe ISH-QD analysis of tissue sections. Tissue sections from xenografts or clinical specimens are used. These are deparaffinized, treated with Proteinase K and hybridized with a biotin-probe to specific to the miRNA. The in situ hybridization is performed by labeling the biotin-probes and followed by labeling with streptavidin tagged quantum dots. Image acquisition of the quantum dots is performed and analyzed for the miRNA expression levels. Combining ISH and QD gives a powerful tool to detect miRNA in different cells of the tissue.
0 Q&A 7478 Views Feb 20, 2017
Cancer cells and cancer associated stromal cells co-evolve secrete extracellular vesicles to the surrounding regions and regulate several processes involved in cancer metastasis. miRNAs have been known to be mediators of cancer progression and metastasis. miRNAs consist of short noncoding RNA. miRNAs are stable in extracellular fluids such as serum, plasma and urine. miRNAs are secreted by cells in normal and diseased conditions. miRNAs signatures have been identified specific to certain disease conditions. Therefore they are valuable biomarkers for different diseases. In our study we identified certain miRNAs, miR-409-3p and miR-409-5p, which were secreted by activated stromal fibroblast cells and were taken up by cancer cells to induce explosive tumor growth, through activation of epithelial to mesenchymal transition of cancer cells. Here we describe a procedure to determine miRNAs (miR-409-3p and miR-409-5p) in extracellular vesicles, which were secreted by prostate cancer stromal cells expressing miR-409. In this procedure, conditioned media from the stromal fibroblasts was used to extract the vesicular fraction. RNA was purified from the vesicular fraction, and specific miRNA was reverse transcribed and quantitated using real-time PCR assay.
1 Q&A 12377 Views Oct 5, 2012
MicroRNAs(miRNAs) are a group of endogenously expressed 20~23 nt small noncoding RNAs, which can directly regulate mRNA stability or translation in a sequence specific manner by incomplete base pairing at the 3’UTR of target mRNA, or indirectly affect transcriptional network by regulating transcription factors. As key regulators of gene expression, miRNAs are involved in the control of diverse developmental and physiological processes, including embryogenesis, differentiation, developmental timing, organogenesis, growth control, and programmed cell death. Aberrant miRNA expression profiles have been observed in many pathological conditions, including cancers, psychiatric diseases, virus infection, etc. However, the underlying mechanisms have been difficult to study in part due to the cellular heterogeneity of complex tissue.

To systematically analyze miRNA expression in complex tissue, we present here a novel miRNA tagging and Affinity Purification method, miRAP, which can be applied to genetically defined cell types in any complex tissues in mice. This method is based on the fact that mature miRNAs are incorporated into RNA-induced silencing complex (RISC), in which the Argonaute protein AGO2 directly binds miRNAs and their mRNA targets. We demonstrate that epitope tagging of AGO2 protein allows direct purification of miRNAs from tissue homogenates using antibodies against the engineered molecular tag. We further established a Cre-loxP binary expression system to deliver epitope-tagged AGO2 (tAGO2) to genetically defined cell types.

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