Early research in developmental timing in C. elegans led to the discovery of lin-4, the first microRNA gene (Lee 1993, Wightman 1993). Since then, miRNAs have been implicated in developmental processes including embryogenesis, differentiation, developmental timing, organogenesis, growth control, and programmed cell death (see Alvarez-Garcia 2005 for a review). Current interest in miRNA regulation of human embryonic stem cells.
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