Molecular Basis for Interaction of let-7 MicroRNAs with Lin28

Department of Biological Chemistry and Molecular Pharmacology, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.
Cell (Impact Factor: 33.12). 11/2011; 147(5):1080-91. DOI: 10.1016/j.cell.2011.10.020
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNA molecules that regulate gene expression. Among these, members of the let-7 miRNA family control many cell-fate determination genes to influence pluripotency, differentiation, and transformation. Lin28 is a specific, posttranscriptional inhibitor of let-7 biogenesis. We report crystal structures of mouse Lin28 in complex with sequences from let-7d, let-7-f1, and let-7 g precursors. The two folded domains of Lin28 recognize two distinct regions of the RNA and are sufficient for inhibition of let-7 in vivo. We also show by NMR spectroscopy that the linker connecting the two folded domains is flexible, accommodating Lin28 binding to diverse let-7 family members. Protein-RNA complex formation imposes specific conformations on both components that could affect downstream recognition by other processing factors. Our data provide a molecular explanation for Lin28 specificity and a model for how it regulates let-7.

  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: It is clear that neural differentiation from human pluripotent stem cells generates cells that are developmentally immature. Here, we show that the let-7 plays a functional role in the developmental decision making of human neural progenitors, controlling whether these cells make neurons or glia. Through gain- and loss-of-function studies on both tissue and pluripotent derived cells, our data show that let-7 specifically regulates decision making in this context by regulation of a key chromatin-associated protein, HMGA2. Furthermore, we provide evidence that the let-7/HMGA2 circuit acts on HES5, a NOTCH effector and well-established node that regulates fate decisions in the nervous system. These data link the let-7 circuit to NOTCH signaling and suggest that this interaction serves to regulate human developmental progression.
    Stem Cell Reports 10/2014; 3(5). DOI:10.1016/j.stemcr.2014.08.015
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The RNA-binding proteins LIN28A and LIN28B have diverse functions in embryonic stem cells, cellular reprogramming, growth, and oncogenesis. Many of these effects occur via direct inhibition of Let-7 microRNAs (miRNAs), although Let-7-independent effects have been surmised. We report that intestine targeted expression of LIN28B causes intestinal hypertrophy, crypt expansion, and Paneth cell loss. Furthermore, LIN28B fosters intestinal polyp and adenocarcinoma formation. To examine potential Let-7-independent functions of LIN28B, we pursued ribonucleoprotein cross-linking, immunoprecipitation, and high-throughput sequencing (CLIP-seq) to identify direct RNA targets. This revealed that LIN28B bound a substantial number of mRNAs and modestly augmented protein levels of these target mRNAs in vivo. Conversely, Let-7 had a profound effect; modulation of Let-7 levels via deletion of the mirLet7c2/mirLet7b genes recapitulated effects of Lin28b overexpression. Furthermore, intestine-specific Let-7 expression could reverse hypertrophy and Paneth cell depletion caused by Lin28b. This was independent of effects on insulin-PI3K-mTOR signaling. Our study reveals that Let-7 miRNAs are critical for repressing intestinal tissue growth and promoting Paneth cell differentiation. Let-7-dependent effects of LIN28B may supersede Let-7-independent effects on intestinal tissue growth. In summary, LIN28B can definitively act as an oncogene in the absence of canonical genetic alterations.
    Genes & development 10/2013; 27(20):2233-45. DOI:10.1101/gad.224659.113 · 12.64 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Human LIN28A and LIN28B are RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) conserved in animals with important roles during development and stem cell reprogramming. We used Photoactivatable-Ribonucleoside-Enhanced Crosslinking and Immunoprecipitation (PAR-CLIP) in HEK293 cells and identified a largely overlapping set of ∼3000 mRNAs at ∼9500 sites located in the 3' UTR and CDS. In vitro and in vivo, LIN28 preferentially bound single-stranded RNA containing a uridine-rich element and one or more flanking guanosines and appeared to be able to disrupt base-pairing to access these elements when embedded in predicted secondary structure. In HEK293 cells, LIN28 protein binding mildly stabilized target mRNAs and increased protein abundance. The top targets were its own mRNAs and those of other RBPs and cell cycle regulators. Alteration of LIN28 protein levels also negatively regulated the abundance of some but not all let-7 miRNA family members, indicating sequence-specific binding of let-7 precursors to LIN28 proteins and competition with cytoplasmic miRNA biogenesis factors.
    RNA 03/2013; DOI:10.1261/rna.036491.112 · 4.62 Impact Factor