Trans-acting Small Interfering RNAs: Biogenesis, Mode of Action, and Role in Plant Development

  • Virginie Jouannet
  • Alexis MaizelEmail author
Part of the Signaling and Communication in Plants book series (SIGCOMM, volume 15)


Trans-acting siRNAs (ta-siRNA) are plant-specific endogenous small regulatory RNAs that are produced from noncoding TAS genes and guide the cleavage of specific mRNA targets. The ta-siRNA biogenesis requires an initial cut by a microRNA and the conversion of one of the resulting cleavage product into a double-stranded RNA which is then cleaved in 21-nt ta-siRNA. ta-siRNAs have the ability to act noncell autonomously and regulate the abundance of a diverse set of genes. The phylogenetically conserved TAS3 pathway controls the abundance of several ARF genes, which encode transcription factors mediating the effects of the phytohormone auxin. The TAS3 pathway controls the transition between juvenile and adult leaves, leaf polarity, and lateral root growth, three essential features of plant development.


Lateral Root Primordia Lateral Root Length Leaf Polarity miR390 Target Site Endogenous Small RNAs 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.



We thank C. Godel and I. Mägele for their reading of the manuscript. Funding was provided by the Land Baden-Wurttemberg, the Chica and Heinz Schaller Foundation, and the Cellnetworks cluster of the Heidelberg University.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Stem Cell BiologyUniversity of HeidelbergHeidelbergGermany

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