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Hello, I'm Amy Kiger from the University
of California in San Diego.
And I'll be talking to you today about
genome scale analysis of cellular
processes using RNAi.
So I'll be talking primarily about a new
methodology that has recently come to
Drosophila, and that is to do with
the era of functional genomics.
And this terminology has been
thrown around a lot recently.
it's classic genetics with a twist in
that it's now sequence informed genetics.
Given the complete genome
sequence that's available.
Simply we can use genome sequence to guide
the systematic perturbations in order to
identify potentially all gene
functions that contribute
to a specific cellular process.
Drosophila of course has a long history
as a useful model organism for functional
analysis and many genes have been well
characterized now in the organism.
With the advent of complete
genome sequence available,
Drosophila is also now an ideal model for
functional genomic approaches.
And these work conducted in cells and
culture will complement the ongoing
in vivo analysis with mutant animals.
So today I'll be talking about
the use of Drosophila cell lines and
information we can learn there
at the cellular level for
gene functions to then make predictions,
as well as provide insights for
ongoing studies in the animal and
The discovery of the cellular
process of RNA interference or
RNAi has been advantageous for
the exploitation of this process for
functional genomic approaches
in many organisms.
So what is RNAi?
RNAi occurs when the cells receive double
stranded RNA, serves as a trigger that
then leads to the destruction of cellular
mRNAs that carry homologous sequences.
And although this is a highly
simplified cartoon of the process,
current research has found that
this is highly specific in that
the double stranded RNA is processed
into short interfering RNAs or
siRNAs of 21 base pairs, and that this
21 base pair match to the target RNA is
imperative in order for the destruction
machinery to destroy the target RNA.
So, non specific matches will
not lead to destruction and
only specific matches of
the 21 nucleotides and like.