Upstream open reading frame

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An Upstream Open Reading Frame (uORF) is an open reading frame (ORF) within the 5' untranslated region (5'UTR) of an mRNA. uORFs can regulate eukaryotic gene expression.[1][2] Translation of the uORF typically inhibits downstream expression of the primary ORF. In bacteria, uORFs are called leader peptides, and were originally discovered on the basis of their impact on the regulation of genes involved in the synthesis or transport of amino acids.

Approximately 50% of human genes contain uORFs in their 5'UTR, and when present, these cause reductions in protein expression.[3] Human peptides derived from translated uORFs can be detected from cellular material with a mass spectrometer.[4]

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  1. ^ Vilela C, McCarthy JE (August 2003). "Regulation of fungal gene expression via short open reading frames in the mRNA 5'untranslated region". Molecular Microbiology. 49 (4): 859–67. doi:10.1046/j.1365-2958.2003.03622.x. PMID 12890013. 
  2. ^ Lovett PS, Rogers EJ (June 1996). "Ribosome regulation by the nascent peptide". Microbiological Reviews. 60 (2): 366–85. PMC 239448Freely accessible. PMID 8801438. 
  3. ^ Calvo SE, Pagliarini DJ, Mootha VK (May 2009). "Upstream open reading frames cause widespread reduction of protein expression and are polymorphic among humans". Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. 106 (18): 7507–12. doi:10.1073/pnas.0810916106. PMID 19372376. 
  4. ^ Slavoff SA, Mitchell AJ, Schwaid AG, Cabili MN, Ma J, Levin JZ, Karger AD, Budnik BA, Rinn JL, Saghatelian A (January 2013). "Peptidomic discovery of short open reading frame-encoded peptides in human cells". Nature Chemical Biology. 9 (1): 59–64. doi:10.1038/nchembio.1120. PMC 3625679Freely accessible. PMID 23160002.