Publications - PNAS - 2003
PNAS Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA; Developmental Biology
Vol. 96, Issue 9, 5049-5054, April 27, 1999
Double-stranded RNA specifically disrupts gene expression during planarian regeneration
Alejandro Sánchez Alvarado* and Phillip A. Newmark
Carnegie Institution of Washington, Department of Embryology, 115 West University Parkway, Baltimore, MD 21210
Communicated by Donald D. Brown, Carnegie Institution of Washington, Baltimore, MD, February 19, 1999 (received for review January 22, 1999)

Metazoan regeneration is one of the least understood fundamental problems of biology. The lack of progress in understanding this phenomenon at the molecular level has been due to the poor regenerative abilities of the genetic organisms used for developmental studies, as well as the difficulties encountered with molecular and genetic manipulations of the commonly studied vertebrate models the urodele amphibians). Here, we demonstrate that introduction of double-stranded RNA selectively abrogates gene function in planarians, a classic model of regeneration. The ability to eliminate gene functionin a regenerating organism such as the planarian overcomes previous experimental limitations and opens the study of animal regeneration to unprecedented levels of molecular detail.

* To whom reprint requests should be addressed e-mail: Alejandro Sánchez Alvarado
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Copyright © 1999 by The National Academy of Sciences