Review: On the selectivity, specificity and signaling potential of long-distance movement of messenger RNA

Regulation of transcription occurs at the cell-type specific level, but transcribed messenger RNA is mobile and can move between tissues through plant vasculature, serving as a long distance messenger. Many mRNA molecules have been identified in the phloem sap, suggesting that mRNA transport goes through plasmodesmata from companion cells into the phloem sieve elements. Transport of mRNA encoding a broad range of functions occurs at the genomic scale but at low efficiency. The secondary structure motifs in the 3′UTR seem to be sufficient for mRNA transport, and interaction with RNA-binding proteins might enhance transcript stability and transport. In the future, visualization of individual transcripts and determining the interactions between mRNA and binding proteins will shed more light on the mechanisms underlying long-distance mRNA transport. (Summary by Magdalena Julkowska) Curr. Opin. Plant Biol. 10.1016/j.pbi.2017.11.001