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Week of April 25, 2010 < Back ¦ 2010 ¦ Home

Hot Paper in Biology

"The impact of microRNA on protein output," by Daehyun Baek, Judit Villen, Chanseok Shin, Fernando D. Camargo, Steven P. Gygi, and David P. Bartel, Nature, 455(7209): 64-71, 4 September 2008

[Authors' affilations: White Institute for Biomedical Research, Cambridge, MA; Howard Hughes Medical Institute, MIT, Cambridge, MA; Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA]

Abstract: "MicroRNAs are endogenous ~ 23-nucleotide RNAs that can pair to sites in the messenger RNAs of protein-coding genes to downregulate the expression from these messages. MicroRNAs are known to influence the evolution and stability of many mRNAs, but their global impact on protein output had not been examined. Here we use quantitative mass spectrometry to measure the response of thousands of proteins after introducing microRNAs into cultured cells and after deleting mir-223 in mouse neutrophils. The identities of the responsive proteins indicate that targeting is primarily through seed-matched sites located within favourable predicted contexts in 39 untranslated regions. Hundreds of genes were directly repressed, albeit each to a modest degree, by individual microRNAs. Although some targets were repressed without detectable changes in mRNA levels, those translationally repressed by more than a third also displayed detectable mRNA destabilization, and, for the more highly repressed targets, mRNA destabilization usually comprised the major component of repression. The impact of microRNAs on the proteome indicated that for most interactions microRNAs act as rheostats to make fine-scale adjustments to protein output."

This 2008 report from Nature was cited 43 times in current journal articles indexed by Clarivate Analytics during January-February 2010. No other biology paper published in the last two years, excluding reviews, collected a higher number of citations during that two-month period. Prior to the most recent bimonthly count, citations to the paper have accrued as follows:

November-December 2009: 42 citations
September-October 2009: 29
July-August 2009: 26
May-June 2009: 30
March-April 2009: 29
January-February 2009: 30
November-December 2008: 7
September-October 2008: 1

Total citations to date: 237

SOURCE: Hot Papers Database (Included with a subscription to the print newsletter Science Watch®, available from the Research Services Group of Thomson Reuters. Packaged on a CD that is mailed with each Science Watch issue, the Hot Papers Database contains data on hundreds of highly cited papers published during the last two years. User interface permits searching by author, organization, journal, field, and more. Total citations, as well as citations accrued during successive bimonthly periods, can be assessed and graphed. An updated CD containing the most recent bimonthly data is mailed with every new issue of Science Watch, six times a year. The CD also includes an electronic version of the Science Watch issue in HTML format, for personal desktop access.

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