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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)
Gene Review

TERC  -  telomerase RNA component

Homo sapiens

Synonyms: DKCA1, PFBMFT2, SCARNA19, TR, TRC3, ...
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Disease relevance of TERC


Psychiatry related information on TERC

  • We used a radioactive in situ method to study expression of the RNA component of human telomerase (hTR) during normal human development and differentiation using archival tissues [5].

High impact information on TERC


Chemical compound and disease context of TERC


Biological context of TERC


Anatomical context of TERC


Associations of TERC with chemical compounds

  • We also observed a significant reduction in TR, the RNA telomerase subunit, mRNA expression at physiological concentrations of melatonin (1 nm) [21].
  • The products synthesized by human telomerase do not contain the nucleotide cytosine, which is encoded by an hTR residue 2 nucleotides (nt) 5' of the template boundary [22].
  • As methylation might be involved in hTERC silencing, we examined the methylation pattern in all samples by direct sequencing and methylation-specific single stand conformation analysis after bisulfite modification. hTERC methylation was never observed, neither in normal nor in tumor tissues [23].
  • CpG dinucleotides in the 5'-untranslated region of hTR were completely unmethylated from -204 to -3 and mosaically methylated from -290 to -272, irrespective of the atypism [24].
  • The exposed RNA template of hTR is an ideal target for antisense oligonucleotides (As-ODN); while recent findings indicate all-trans retinoid acid (ATRA) could effectively inhibit the expression of catalytic subunit-hTERT [25].

Physical interactions of TERC


Regulatory relationships of TERC

  • However, the transcription rate of hTR is greatly increased in cells expressing endogenous hTERT, suggesting some overlap in transcriptional regulatory control [30].
  • Dyskerin expression influences the level of ribosomal RNA pseudo-uridylation and telomerase RNA component in human breast cancer [31].
  • Reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analysis revealed that TP1 was ubiquitously expressed. hTR was found in all malignant (100%) and in 13/28 (46%) benign PCs [32].
  • Retrovirus-mediated expression of p21WAF1 stopped the growth of all these cell types, but expression of wt p53 did not affect the cells' growth properties. p21WAF1 also downregulated human telomerase RNA component mRNA expression in HaCaT cells [33].
  • These results indicate that the T3-bound TR inhibits the transcription of cyclin D1 through the Tcf/Lef-1 site, which is positively regulated by the Wnt-signaling pathway [34].

Other interactions of TERC

  • The 5' half of hTR comprises the pseudoknot (core) domain, which includes the RNA template for telomere synthesis and a highly conserved pseudoknot that is required for telomerase activity [35].
  • Dyskerin mRNA levels were highly variable and directly associated with both telomerase RNA component levels and rRNA pseudo-uridylation [31].
  • Neither IGF-1 nor PHA altered hTR expression [36].
  • The hTR/GAPDH mRNA ratio and hTR mRNA/total RNA in superficial tumor were significantly lower than in invasive bladder tumor [37].
  • RT-PCR analysis was used for the detection of hTR, hTERT, and PGM1 (as a housekeeping) genes expression [38].

Analytical, diagnostic and therapeutic context of TERC

  • This provided the rationale for the development of a multicolor fluorescence in situ hybridization (FISH) probe set as a diagnostic tool for the direct detection of TERC gains in Pap smears [4].
  • RT-PCR analyses revealed that hTR and TP I mRNA were constitutively expressed both in tumor and in normal tissues [39].
  • Our study conclusively demonstrates that antisense hTR effectively inhibits the growth of human glioma cells in vitro and in vivo and, thus, may be potentially used for gene therapy of malignant gliomas and other cancers [40].
  • The levels of human telomerase RNA component (hTERC) also increased approximately 2.7-fold at 5 days after treatment [41].
  • Telomerase activity was determined with ELISA, and its subunits human telomerase reverse transcriptase (hTERT) and human telomerase RNA (hTR) by RT-PCR [42].


  1. Disease anticipation is associated with progressive telomere shortening in families with dyskeratosis congenita due to mutations in TERC. Vulliamy, T., Marrone, A., Szydlo, R., Walne, A., Mason, P.J., Dokal, I. Nat. Genet. (2004) [Pubmed]
  2. Heterozygous telomerase RNA mutations found in dyskeratosis congenita and aplastic anemia reduce telomerase activity via haploinsufficiency. Marrone, A., Stevens, D., Vulliamy, T., Dokal, I., Mason, P.J. Blood (2004) [Pubmed]
  3. Mutations of the human telomerase RNA gene (TERC) in aplastic anemia and myelodysplastic syndrome. Yamaguchi, H., Baerlocher, G.M., Lansdorp, P.M., Chanock, S.J., Nunez, O., Sloand, E., Young, N.S. Blood (2003) [Pubmed]
  4. Genomic amplification of the human telomerase gene (TERC) in pap smears predicts the development of cervical cancer. Heselmeyer-Haddad, K., Sommerfeld, K., White, N.M., Chaudhri, N., Morrison, L.E., Palanisamy, N., Wang, Z.Y., Auer, G., Steinberg, W., Ried, T. Am. J. Pathol. (2005) [Pubmed]
  5. Expression of the RNA component of telomerase during human development and differentiation. Yashima, K., Maitra, A., Rogers, B.B., Timmons, C.F., Rathi, A., Pinar, H., Wright, W.E., Shay, J.W., Gazdar, A.F. Cell Growth Differ. (1998) [Pubmed]
  6. Telomere length regulates the epigenetic status of mammalian telomeres and subtelomeres. Benetti, R., García-Cao, M., Blasco, M.A. Nat. Genet. (2007) [Pubmed]
  7. Reconstitution of human telomerase with the template RNA component hTR and the catalytic protein subunit hTRT. Weinrich, S.L., Pruzan, R., Ma, L., Ouellette, M., Tesmer, V.M., Holt, S.E., Bodnar, A.G., Lichtsteiner, S., Kim, N.W., Trager, J.B., Taylor, R.D., Carlos, R., Andrews, W.H., Wright, W.E., Shay, J.W., Harley, C.B., Morin, G.B. Nat. Genet. (1997) [Pubmed]
  8. The RNA component of telomerase is mutated in autosomal dominant dyskeratosis congenita. Vulliamy, T., Marrone, A., Goldman, F., Dearlove, A., Bessler, M., Mason, P.J., Dokal, I. Nature (2001) [Pubmed]
  9. The RNA component of human telomerase. Feng, J., Funk, W.D., Wang, S.S., Weinrich, S.L., Avilion, A.A., Chiu, C.P., Adams, R.R., Chang, E., Allsopp, R.C., Yu, J. Science (1995) [Pubmed]
  10. Telomerase activity and in situ telomerase RNA expression in oral carcinogenesis. Chang, L.Y., Lin, S.C., Chang, C.S., Wong, Y.K., Hu, Y.C., Chang, K.W. J. Oral Pathol. Med. (1999) [Pubmed]
  11. Correlation of chemosensitivity to anticancer drugs and telomere length, telomerase activity and telomerase RNA expression in human ovarian cancer cells. Kiyozuka, Y., Yamamoto, D., Yang, J., Uemura, Y., Senzaki, H., Adachi, S., Tsubura, A. Anticancer Res. (2000) [Pubmed]
  12. RNA expression of human telomerase subunits TR and TERT is differentially affected by melatonin receptor agonists in the MCF-7 tumor cell line. Leon-Blanco, M.M., Guerrero, J.M., Reiter, R.J., Pozo, D. Cancer Lett. (2004) [Pubmed]
  13. The effect of TERC haploinsufficiency on the inheritance of telomere length. Goldman, F., Bouarich, R., Kulkarni, S., Freeman, S., Du, H.Y., Harrington, L., Mason, P.J., Londoño-Vallejo, A., Bessler, M. Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. (2005) [Pubmed]
  14. Identification and functional characterization of 2 variant alleles of the telomerase RNA template gene (TERC) in a patient with dyskeratosis congenita. Ly, H., Schertzer, M., Jastaniah, W., Davis, J., Yong, S.L., Ouyang, Q., Blackburn, E.H., Parslow, T.G., Lansdorp, P.M. Blood (2005) [Pubmed]
  15. Frequent gain of the human telomerase gene TERC at 3q26 in cervical adenocarcinomas. Andersson, S., Wallin, K.L., Hellström, A.C., Morrison, L.E., Hjerpe, A., Auer, G., Ried, T., Larsson, C., Heselmeyer-Haddad, K. Br. J. Cancer (2006) [Pubmed]
  16. Human telomerase RNA degradation by 2'-5'-linked oligoadenylate antisense chimeras in a cell-free system, cultured tumor cells, and murine xenograft models. Paranjape, J.M., Xu, D., Kushner, D.M., Okicki, J., Lindner, D.J., Cramer, H., Silverman, R.H., Leaman, D.W. Oligonucleotides. (2006) [Pubmed]
  17. The relationship between telomerase activity and proliferation in cutaneous melanoma. Zamolo, G., Coklo, M., Bosnar, A., Batinac, T. Med. Hypotheses (2007) [Pubmed]
  18. Expression of telomerase subunits and localization of telomerase activation in hydatidiform mole. Nishi, H., Ohyashiki, K., Fujito, A., Yahata, N., Ohyashiki, J.H., Isaka, K., Takayama, M. Placenta (1999) [Pubmed]
  19. Telomerase-independent Regulation of ATR by Human Telomerase RNA. Kedde, M., le Sage, C., Duursma, A., Zlotorynski, E., van Leeuwen, B., Nijkamp, W., Beijersbergen, R., Agami, R. J. Biol. Chem. (2006) [Pubmed]
  20. Reconstitution of human telomerase activity in vitro. Beattie, T.L., Zhou, W., Robinson, M.O., Harrington, L. Curr. Biol. (1998) [Pubmed]
  21. Melatonin inhibits telomerase activity in the MCF-7 tumor cell line both in vivo and in vitro. Leon-Blanco, M.M., Guerrero, J.M., Reiter, R.J., Calvo, J.R., Pozo, D. J. Pineal Res. (2003) [Pubmed]
  22. Regulation of 5' template usage and incorporation of noncognate nucleotides by human telomerase. Moriarty, T.J., Marie-Egyptienne, D.T., Autexier, C. RNA (2005) [Pubmed]
  23. The human telomerase RNA gene (hTERC) is regulated during carcinogenesis but is not dependent on DNA methylation. Guilleret, I., Yan, P., Guillou, L., Braunschweig, R., Coindre, J.M., Benhattar, J. Carcinogenesis (2002) [Pubmed]
  24. Increased hTR expression during transition from adenoma to carcinoma is not associated with promoter methylation. Nakamura, A., Suda, T., Honma, T., Takahashi, T., Igarashi, M., Waguri, N., Kawai, H., Mita, Y., Aoyagi, Y. Dig. Dis. Sci. (2004) [Pubmed]
  25. Synergistic down-regulation of telomerase by all-trans retinoic acid and antisense oligonucleotide in oral squamous cell carcinoma cell line (Tca8113). Zhang, P., Xu, Q., Chen, W.T., Duan, L.Q., Zhang, Z.Y., Zhou, X.J. Oral Oncol. (2005) [Pubmed]
  26. Functional regions of human telomerase reverse transcriptase and human telomerase RNA required for telomerase activity and RNA-protein interactions. Bachand, F., Autexier, C. Mol. Cell. Biol. (2001) [Pubmed]
  27. Human telomerase RNA-protein interactions. Bachand, F., Triki, I., Autexier, C. Nucleic Acids Res. (2001) [Pubmed]
  28. MDM2 negatively regulates the human telomerase RNA gene promoter. Zhao, J., Bilsland, A., Jackson, K., Keith, W.N. BMC Cancer (2005) [Pubmed]
  29. Human Ku70/80 interacts directly with hTR, the RNA component of human telomerase. Ting, N.S., Yu, Y., Pohorelic, B., Lees-Miller, S.P., Beattie, T.L. Nucleic Acids Res. (2005) [Pubmed]
  30. Both transcriptional and posttranscriptional mechanisms regulate human telomerase template RNA levels. Yi, X., Tesmer, V.M., Savre-Train, I., Shay, J.W., Wright, W.E. Mol. Cell. Biol. (1999) [Pubmed]
  31. Dyskerin expression influences the level of ribosomal RNA pseudo-uridylation and telomerase RNA component in human breast cancer. Montanaro, L., Brigotti, M., Clohessy, J., Barbieri, S., Ceccarelli, C., Santini, D., Taffurelli, M., Calienni, M., Teruya-Feldstein, J., Trerè, D., Pandolfi, P.P., Derenzini, M. J. Pathol. (2006) [Pubmed]
  32. HSP90 is a key for telomerase activation and malignant transition in pheochromocytoma. Boltze, C., Lehnert, H., Schneider-Stock, R., Peters, B., Hoang-Vu, C., Roessner, A. Endocrine (2003) [Pubmed]
  33. Growth arrest of immortalized human keratinocytes and suppression of telomerase activity by p21WAF1 gene expression. Kallassy, M., Martel, N., Damour, O., Yamasaki, H., Nakazawa, H. Mol. Carcinog. (1998) [Pubmed]
  34. Beta-catenin/Tcf-1-mediated transactivation of cyclin D1 promoter is negatively regulated by thyroid hormone. Natsume, H., Sasaki, S., Kitagawa, M., Kashiwabara, Y., Matsushita, A., Nakano, K., Nishiyama, K., Nagayama, K., Misawa, H., Masuda, H., Nakamura, H. Biochem. Biophys. Res. Commun. (2003) [Pubmed]
  35. Structure of the human telomerase RNA pseudoknot reveals conserved tertiary interactions essential for function. Theimer, C.A., Blois, C.A., Feigon, J. Mol. Cell (2005) [Pubmed]
  36. Effect of insulin-like growth factor 1 on PHA-stimulated cord blood mononuclear cell telomerase activity. Tu, W., Zhang, D.K., Cheung, P.T., Tsao, S.W., Lau, Y.L. Br. J. Haematol. (1999) [Pubmed]
  37. Real-time quantitative analysis for human telomerase reverse transcriptase mRNA and human telomerase RNA component mRNA expressions as markers for clinicopathologic parameters in urinary bladder cancer. Takihana, Y., Tsuchida, T., Fukasawa, M., Araki, I., Tanabe, N., Takeda, M. International journal of urology : official journal of the Japanese Urological Association. (2006) [Pubmed]
  38. The expression of hTR and hTERT in human breast cancer: correlation with clinico-pathological parameters. Hosseini-Asl, S., Atri, M., Modarressi, M.H., Salhab, M., Mokbel, K., Mehdipour, P. International seminars in surgical oncology [electronic resource] : ISSO. (2006) [Pubmed]
  39. hTERT is a critical determinant of telomerase activity in renal-cell carcinoma. Kanaya, T., Kyo, S., Takakura, M., Ito, H., Namiki, M., Inoue, M. Int. J. Cancer (1998) [Pubmed]
  40. Antisense telomerase RNA inhibits the growth of human glioma cells in vitro and in vivo. You, Y., Pu, P., Huang, Q., Xia, Z., Wang, C., Wang, G., Yu, C., Yu, J.J., Reed, E., Li, Q.Q. Int. J. Oncol. (2006) [Pubmed]
  41. Telomerase activity is down regulated via decreases in hTERT mRNA but not TEP1 mRNA or hTERC during the differentiation of leukemic cells. Koyanagi, Y., Kobayashi, D., Yajima, T., Asanuma, K., Kimura, T., Sato, T., Kida, T., Yagihashi, A., Kameshima, H., Watanabe, N. Anticancer Res. (2000) [Pubmed]
  42. Genomic instability is associated with lack of telomerase activation in ovarian cancer. Landen, C.N., Klingelhutz, A., Coffin, J.E., Sorosky, J.I., Sood, A.K. Cancer Biol. Ther. (2004) [Pubmed]
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