Home > Interesting link > C. elegans inherit traits without DNA

C. elegans inherit traits without DNA

From Cell:

Transgenerational Inheritance of an Acquired Small RNA-Based Antiviral Response in C. elegans
Oded Rechavi, Gregory Minevich, Oliver Hobert

Summary
Induced expression of the Flock House virus in the soma of C. elegans results in the RNAi-dependent production of virus-derived, small-interfering RNAs (viRNAs), which in turn silence the viral genome. We show here that the viRNA-mediated viral silencing effect is transmitted in a non-Mendelian manner to many ensuing generations. We show that the viral silencing agents, viRNAs, are transgenerationally transmitted in a template-independent manner and work in trans to silence viral genomes present in animals that are deficient in producing their own viRNAs. These results provide evidence for the transgenerational inheritance of an acquired trait, induced by the exposure of animals to a specific, biologically relevant physiological challenge. The ability to inherit such extragenic information may provide adaptive benefits to an animal.

Graphical abstract

Get the complete manuscript here.

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