University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Genetics Seminar  > Widespread translation of small Open Reading Frames from coding regions, UTRs and non-coding RNAs.

Widespread translation of small Open Reading Frames from coding regions, UTRs and non-coding RNAs.

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Caroline Newnham.

Host: Alfonso Martinez-Arias

Thousands of small Open Reading Frames (smORFs) encoding small peptides of fewer than 100 amino-acids exist in our genomes. Examples of functional smORFs have been characterised in a few species but the actual number of translated smORFs, and their molecular, functional and evolutionary features are not known. I will present a genome-wide assessment of smORF translation by deep polysomal profiling suggesting that smORFs are translated at the same level and in the same relative numbers (80%) as normal proteins. The smORF peptides appear widely conserved, show activity in cells, and display a putative amino-acid signature. These findings reinforce the idea that smORFs are an abundant and fundamental genome component, displaying features usually attributed to canonical proteins, including high translation levels, biological function, amino-acid sequence specificity and cross-species conservation.

This talk is part of the Genetics Seminar series.

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