Infinity: An in-silico tool for genome-wide prediction of specific DNA matrices in miRNA genomic loci

Emmanuela Falcone, Luca Grandoni, Francesca Garibaldi, Isabella Manni, Giancarlo Filligoi, Giulia Piaggio, Aymone Gurtner

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Motivation miRNAs are potent regulators of gene expression and modulate multiple cellular processes in physiology and pathology. Deregulation of miRNAs expression has been found in various cancer types, thus, miRNAs may be potential targets for cancer therapy. However, the mechanisms through which miRNAs are regulated in cancer remain unclear. Therefore, the identification of transcriptional factor-miRNA crosstalk is one of the most update aspects of the study of miRNAs regulation. Results In the present study we describe the development of a fast and user-friendly software, named infinity, able to find the presence of DNA matrices, such as binding sequences for transcriptional factors, on ∼65kb (kilobase) of 939 human miRNA genomic sequences, simultaneously. Of note, the power of this software has been validated in vivo by performing chromatin immunoprecipitation assays on a subset of new in silico identified target sequences (CCAAT) for the transcription factor NF-Y on colon cancer deregulated miRNA loci. Moreover, for the first time, we have demonstrated that NF-Y, through its CCAAT binding activity, regulates the expression of miRNA-181a, -181b, -21, -17, -130b, -301b in colon cancer cells. Conclusions The infinity software that we have developed is a powerful tool to underscore new TF/ miRNA regulatory networks. Availability and Implementation Infinity was implemented in pure Java using Eclipse framework, and runs on Linux and MS Windows machine, with MySQL database. The software is freely available on the web at The website is implemented in JavaScript, PHP and HTML with all major browsers supported.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0153658
JournalPLoS One
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 1 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Medicine(all)


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