No small feat: microRNA responses during vocal communication in songbirds
Department of Behavioral Neuroscience, Oregon Health and Science University, 3181 Sam Jackson Park Rd L470, Portland, OR 97239, USA
BMC Biology 2011, 9:35 doi:10.1186/1741-7007-9-35Published: 31 May 2011
Simply hearing the song produced by another bird of the same species triggers the regulation of microRNAs (miRNAs) in high-order auditory parts of the zebra finch brain. Some of the identified miRNAs appear to be unique to birds, possibly to songbirds. These findings, reported in BMC Genomics, highlight the complexities of gene regulation associated with vocal communication and point to possible key regulators of song-triggered gene networks.