Long INterspersed element (LINE-1, L1) retrotransposons are the most abundant transposable elements in the human genome, constituting approximately 17%. They move by a “copy-paste” mechanism, involving reverse transcription of an RNA intermediate and insertion of its cDNA copy at a new site in the genome. L1 retrotransposition (L1-RTP) can cause insertional mutations, alter gene expression, transduce exons, and induce epigenetic dysregulation. L1-RTP is generally repressed; however, a number of observations collected over about 15 years revealed that it can occur in response to environmental stresses. Moreover, emerging evidence indicates that L1-RTP can play a role in the onset of several neurological and oncological diseases in humans. In recent years, great attention has been paid to the exposome paradigm, which proposes that health effects of an environmental factor should be evaluated considering both cumulative environmental exposures and the endogenous processes resulting from the biological response. L1-RTP could be an endogenous process considered for this application. Here, we summarize the current understanding of environmental factors that can affect the retrotransposition of human L1 elements. Evidence indicates that L1-RTP alteration is triggered by numerous and various environmental stressors, such as chemical agents (heavy metals, carcinogens, oxidants, and drugs), physical agents (ionizing and non-ionizing radiations), and experiential factors (voluntary exercise, social isolation, maternal care, and environmental light/dark cycles). These data come from in vitro studies on cell lines and in vivo studies on transgenic animals: future investigations should be focused on physiologically relevant models to gain a better understanding of this topic.

Long INterspersed element-1 mobility as a sensor of environmental stresses

Del Re B.
;
Giorgi G.
Membro del Collaboration Group
2020

Abstract

Long INterspersed element (LINE-1, L1) retrotransposons are the most abundant transposable elements in the human genome, constituting approximately 17%. They move by a “copy-paste” mechanism, involving reverse transcription of an RNA intermediate and insertion of its cDNA copy at a new site in the genome. L1 retrotransposition (L1-RTP) can cause insertional mutations, alter gene expression, transduce exons, and induce epigenetic dysregulation. L1-RTP is generally repressed; however, a number of observations collected over about 15 years revealed that it can occur in response to environmental stresses. Moreover, emerging evidence indicates that L1-RTP can play a role in the onset of several neurological and oncological diseases in humans. In recent years, great attention has been paid to the exposome paradigm, which proposes that health effects of an environmental factor should be evaluated considering both cumulative environmental exposures and the endogenous processes resulting from the biological response. L1-RTP could be an endogenous process considered for this application. Here, we summarize the current understanding of environmental factors that can affect the retrotransposition of human L1 elements. Evidence indicates that L1-RTP alteration is triggered by numerous and various environmental stressors, such as chemical agents (heavy metals, carcinogens, oxidants, and drugs), physical agents (ionizing and non-ionizing radiations), and experiential factors (voluntary exercise, social isolation, maternal care, and environmental light/dark cycles). These data come from in vitro studies on cell lines and in vivo studies on transgenic animals: future investigations should be focused on physiologically relevant models to gain a better understanding of this topic.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11585/755387
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