Plant developmental biology is associated with various gene regulatory pathways involved in different phases of their lifecycle. In course of development, growth and differentiation of different organs in plants are regulated by specific sets ofgene expression. With the advances in genomic and bioinformatic techniques, particularly high-throughput sequencingtechnology, many transcriptional units with no protein-coding potential have been discovered. Previously thought to be thedark matters of genome, long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are gradually gaining importance as crucial players in generegulation during different developmental phases. Some lncRNAs, showing complementarity to microRNAs (miRNAs), areused as endogenous target mimics of specific miRNA family. A number of lncRNAs can also act as natural antisensetranscripts to attenuate the expression of coding genes. Although lncRNA-mediated regulations have extensively beenstudied in animals, plant lncRNA research is still in its initial phase. The present review highlights the regulatory mechanismand different physiological aspects of lncRNAs in plant development. In plants, lncRNAs are found to be associatedwith a number of plant developmental functions such as lateral root development, vernalization, photomorphogenesis,pollen development, fiber development and nodulation. Understanding these potent roles of lncRNAs in plant developmentcan further provide novel tools for crop improvement programs in future.
Volume 44 | Issue 5
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