Image provided by Jingyi Fei, Taekjip Ha Lab
Research funded by the National Science Foundation and the American Cancer Society
The best-known role of RNA is that of a messenger within the cell, carrying instructions for how to build proteins. However, RNA plays many other important roles, some of which are still being discovered. The bright spots that form the basis for this image were produced by labeling a long non-coding RNA (a recently described class of RNA) with a fluorescent dye. Imaging long non-coding RNAs will shed light on possible correlations between their organization in the nucleus and their potential function in coordinating gene expression.