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Frontiers of Medicine

ISSN 2095-0217

ISSN 2095-0225(Online)

CN 11-5983/R

Postal Subscription Code 80-967

2018 Impact Factor: 1.847

Front. Med.    2018, Vol. 12 Issue (4) : 481-489
RNA m6A modification and its function in diseases
Jiyu Tong1, Richard A. Flavell2,3(), Hua-Bing Li1()
1. Shanghai Institute of Immunology, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Shanghai Jiao Tong University School of Medicine (SJTU-SM), Shanghai 200025, China
2. Department of Immunobiology, Yale University School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520, USA
3. Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Chevy Chase, MD 20815-6789, USA
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N6-methyladenosine (m6A) is the most common post-transcriptional RNA modification throughout the transcriptome, affecting fundamental aspects of RNA metabolism. m6A modification could be installed by m6A “writers” composed of core catalytic components (METTL3/METTL14/WTAP) and newly defined regulators and removed by m6A “erasers” (FTO and ALKBH5). The function of m6A is executed by m6A “readers” that bind to m6A directly (YTH domain-containing proteins, eIF3 and IGF2BPs) or indirectly (HNRNPA2B1). In the past few years, advances in m6A modulators (“writers,” “erasers,” and “readers”) have remarkably renewed our understanding of the function and regulation of m6A in different cells under normal or disease conditions. However, the mechanism and the regulatory network of m6A are still largely unknown. Moreover, investigations of the m6A physiological roles in human diseases are limited. In this review, we summarize the recent advances in m6A research and highlight the functional relevance and importance of m6A modification in in vitro cell lines, in physiological contexts, and in cancers.

Keywords RNA modification      m6A      immunity      cancer      epigenetics     
Corresponding Authors: Richard A. Flavell,Hua-Bing Li   
Just Accepted Date: 10 July 2018   Online First Date: 10 August 2018    Issue Date: 03 September 2018
 Cite this article:   
Jiyu Tong,Richard A. Flavell,Hua-Bing Li. RNA m6A modification and its function in diseases[J]. Front. Med., 2018, 12(4): 481-489.
Fig.1  Dynamic m6A system. m6A marker is installed at the 3′-UTR by m6A “writers” co-transcriptionally and could be reversed by m6A “erasers.” The marker is recognized in nucleus and cytoplasm by different m6A “readers” and executes different functions involved in RNA metabolism, including splicing, export, translation, and RNA decay.
Fig.2  Does “RNA code” exist? How over 100 histone modifications coordinate to regulate the transcription prompted the well-known concepts of histone code hypothesis. Similarly, over 100 different RNA modifications are known, and how those different RNA modifications may regulate the RNA metabolism may constitute the “RNA code.”
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