Telomeric repeat containing RNA (TERRA): Aging and cancer

Sonam Sinha, Samriddhi Shukla, Sajid Khan, Mohammad Farhan, Mohammad Amjad Kamal, Syed Musthapa Meeran

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations

Abstract

Telomeric repeat containing RNAs (TERRA) are small RNA molecules synthesized from telomeric regions which were previously considered as silent genomic domains. In normal cells, these RNAs are transcribed in a direction from subtelomeric region towards the chromosome ends, but in case of cancer cells, their expression remains limited or absent. Telomerase is a rate limiting enzyme for cellular senescence, cancer and aging. Most of the studies deal with the manipulation of telomerase enzyme in cancer and aging either by synthetic oligonucleotide or by natural phytochemicals. Here, we collected evidences and discussed intensely about the bio-molecular structure of TERRA, naturally occurring ligands of telomerase, and their genetic and epigenetic regulations in aging associated diseases. Due to their capability to act as naturally occurring ligands of telomerase, these RNAs can overcome the limitations possessed by synthetic oligonucleotides, which are aimed against telomerase. Drugs specifically targeting TERRA molecules could modulate telomerase-mediated telomere lengthening. Thus, targeting TERRA-mediated regulation of telomerase would be a promising therapeutic strategy against cancer and age-associated diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)936-946
Number of pages11
JournalCNS and Neurological Disorders - Drug Targets
Volume14
Issue number7
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Aging
  • Cancer
  • Non-coding RNA
  • Telomerase
  • Telomere

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Pharmacology

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