Open Access Highly Accessed Research article

Characterization of the stress associated microRNAs in Glycine max by deep sequencing

Haiyan Li12, Yuanyuan Dong1, Hailong Yin2, Nan Wang1, Jing Yang1, Xiuming Liu12, Yanfang Wang12, Jinyu Wu13* and Xiaokun Li1*

Author affiliations

1 Ministry of Education Engineering Research Center of Bioreactor and Pharmaceutical Development, Jilin Agricultural University, Changchun, Jilin 130118, China

2 College of Life Sciences, Jilin Agricultural University, Changchun, Jilin 130118, China

3 Institute of Biomedical Informatics, Wenzhou Medical College, Wenzhou 325000, China

For all author emails, please log on.

Citation and License

BMC Plant Biology 2011, 11:170  doi:10.1186/1471-2229-11-170

Published: 23 November 2011



Plants involved in highly complex and well-coordinated systems have evolved a considerable degree of developmental plasticity, thus minimizing the damage caused by stress. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have recently emerged as key regulators in gene regulation, developmental processes and stress tolerance in plants.


In this study, soybean miRNAs associated with stress responses (drought, salinity, and alkalinity) have been identified and analyzed in combination with deep sequencing technology and in-depth bioinformatics analysis. One hundred and thirty three conserved miRNAs representing 95 miRNA families were expressed in soybeans under three treatments. In addition, 71, 50, and 45 miRNAs are either uniquely or differently expressed under drought, salinity, and alkalinity, respectively, suggesting that many miRNAs are inducible and are differentially expressed in response to certain stress.


Our study has important implications for further identification of gene regulation under abiotic stresses and significantly contributes a complete profile of miRNAs in Glycine max.