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Long non-coding RNA in myocardial cells

Team: Anne Dueck, Lucia Koblitz, Andrea Ahles, Vanessa Philippi, Deepak Ramanujam

The field of long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) has been rapidly growing within the last few years. As a class of molecules, they are until now only characterized by their length (> 200 nucleotides) and the lack of coding potential. Based on data sets from high throughput sequencing, several thousand genes have been identified to harbor potential lncRNAs (Ulitsky, Nat. Rev. Genet., 2016). Although only very few have thus far been functionally characterized in the heart, these studies already indicate a fundamental impact of lncRNAs on cardiac development, function and disease.
Our team studies the function of specific lncRNAs in primary cardiac cells, which we isolate by flow cytometry (Ramanujam et al., Mol. Ther., 2016). We apply several methods including high content imaging to screen for potential functions of individual lncRNAs, in order to decipher the function of the respective candidates. This knowledge may further lead to a translational approach for the treatment of human heart failure

Ulitsky, I., Nat. Rev. Genet. 17. 2016.
Ramanujam, D. et al., Mol. Ther. 2016.