Genome-wide identification and characterization of microRNAs differentially expressed in fibers in a cotton phytochrome A1 RNAi line. Academic Article uri icon


  • Cotton fiber is an important commodity throughout the world. Fiber property determines fiber quality and commercial values. Previous studies showed that silencing phytochrome A1 gene (PHYA1) by RNA interference in Upland cotton (Gossypium hirsutum L. cv. Coker 312) had generated PHYA1 RNAi lines with simultaneous improvements in fiber quality (longer, stronger and finer fiber) and other key agronomic traits. Characterization of the altered molecular processes in these RNAi genotypes and its wild-type controls is a great interest to better understand the PHYA1 RNAi phenotypes. In this study, a total of 77 conserved miRNAs belonging to 61 families were examined in a PHYA1 RNAi line and its parental Coker 312 genotype by using multiplex sequencing. Of these miRNAs, seven (miR7503, miR7514, miR399c, miR399d, miR160, miR169b, and miR2950) were found to be differentially expressed in PHYA1 RNAi cotton. The target genes of these differentially expressed miRNAs were involved in the metabolism and signaling pathways of phytohormones, which included Gibberellin, Auxin and Abscisic Acid. The expression of several MYB transcription factors was also affected by miRNAs in RNAi cotton. In addition, 35 novel miRNAs (novel miR1-novel miR35) were identified in fibers for the first time in this study. Target genes of vast majority of these novel miRNAs were also predicted. Of these, nine novel miRNAs (novel-miR1, 2, 16, 19, 26, 27, 28, 31 and 32) were targeted to cytochrome P450-like TATA box binding protein (TBP). The qRT-PCR confirmed expression levels of several differentially regulated miRNAs. Expression patterns of four miRNAs-targets pairs were also examined via RNA deep sequencing. Together, the results imply that the regulation of miRNA expression might confer to the phenotype of the PHYA1 RNAi line(s) with improved fiber quality.

published proceedings

  • PLoS One

altmetric score

  • 1.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Miao, Q., Deng, P., Saha, S., Jenkins, J. N., Hsu, C., Abdurakhmonov, I. Y., ... Ma, D.

citation count

  • 8

complete list of authors

  • Miao, Qing||Deng, Peng||Saha, Sukumar||Jenkins, Johnie N||Hsu, Chuan-Yu||Abdurakhmonov, Ibrokhim Y||Buriev, Zabardast T||Pepper, Alan||Ma, Din-Pow

editor list (cited editors)

  • Unver, T.

publication date

  • June 2017