RNA-binding proteins and microRNAs in gastrointestinal epithelial homeostasis and diseases

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HighlightsGut epithelium is a self-renewing tissue and its homeostasis is tightly regulated.RBPs and miRNAs play an important role in regulating GI mucosal growth and repair.The roles of RBPs and miRNAs in gut mucosal homeostasis and diseases are discussed.The epithelium of gastrointestinal (GI) mucosa is a rapidly self-renewing tissue in the body, and its homeostasis is preserved through strict regulation of cell proliferation and apoptosis. Epithelial cells originate from a small number of pluripotent stem cells, which divide to either renew themselves or become committed crypt cells. RNA-binding proteins (RBPs) and microRNAs (miRNAs) regulate gene expression at the posttranscriptional level and are recently shown to modulate GI mucosal growth and repair after injury. Here we highlight the roles of RBPs HuR, CUG-binding protein 1, AU-binding factor 1, and several GI epithelial-specific miRNAs in gut mucosal homeostasis and diseases and also further analyze the mechanisms through which RBPs and miRNAs modulate the stability and translation of target mRNAs.

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