Virus-Based microRNA Silencing in Plants.
Additional Document Info
Virus-based microRNA silencing (VbMS) is an efficient, powerful, and high-throughput approach to screen and investigate the function of microRNAs (miRNAs) in plants. The VbMS system was originally developed in Nicotiana benthamiana and tomato (Solanum lycopersicum) and has been extended to various other plant species such as Arabidopsis, cotton, and wheat with different virus vectors. VbMS is generally designed to use virus vectors to direct the expression of miRNA target mimic (TM) molecules which can complementarily pair to target miRNAs and block their function. Here, we describe the TRV- and PVX-based VbMS approaches to silence endogenous miRNAs in N. benthamiana and tomato plants by Agrobacterium infiltration. This method can be further applied to other plant species using suitable virus vectors in combination with diverse TM strategies, which will facilitate functional studies of miRNAs in plants.