Reading about microRNAs encoded by viruses to control infection not worth $315

EpiGenie Reviews: RNA Interference and Viruses – Current Innovations and Future Trends
[Via EpiGenie | Epigenetics and Non-Coding RNA News]

RNA interference (RNAi) was first discovered in 1998 and has sparked new innovations and novel research tools for biological research ever since. RNAi has the scientific community buzzing because of it’s huge potential to tackle some of our most dreaded viral infectious diseases, like hepatitis C virus (HCV) and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). But there are still some major hurdles to clear before testing and treatment in actual human beings is a reality.

In RNA Interference and Viruses: Current Innovations and Future Trends, edited by Miguel Angel Martinez, RNAi experts contribute their thoughts and opinions on the field and review the latest info on RNAi-virus interactions, RNAi-based antiviral therapeutics and the role of RNAi in natural antiviral defense. Other chapters also cover; the efficacy and safety of RNAi-based antiviral drugs, RNAi technology development, and a glimpse into the road forward in future RNAi research. RNA Interference and Viruses cover 11 chapters, and here are previews of a few with interesting topics:

The Properties and Roles of Virus-encoded MicroRNAs

Mélanie Tanguy and Sébastien Pfeffer

Recently it was realized that viruses could encode micro (mi)RNAs, much like organisms they infect. This fact puts a whole new spin on the study of host-virus interactions, as more is learned both about miRNAs, as well as how viruses employ them. Some viruses, like the herpesvirus and polyomavirus families, have hijacked the miRNA mechanism to aid in the infection of the host organism. This chapter sums up what is known about viral miRNAs including: specific properties, viral and cellular targets, and the roles they play in infection. It seems that virally encoded miRNAs are a part of virtually every step of the virus life cycle.


This chapter sounded pretty cool. microRNAs have been shown to control all sorts of post-transcription events. It would make sense that viruses would appropriate these for their own uses.

So I go to the publisher’s website and they want … $315 for a book that was published in 2010!

Way, way too expensive for an out of date book. Think I’ll do some research reviews on my own.