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PLoS Genet. 2008 Jan;4(1):e22. doi: 10.1371/journal.pgen.0040022.

Exploration of small RNAs.

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1
RIKEN Frontier Research System, Wako, Saitama, Japan.

Abstract

For several decades, only a limited number of noncoding RNAs, such as ribosomal and transfer RNA, have been studied in any depth. In recent years, additional species of noncoding RNAs have increasingly been discovered. Of these, small RNA species attract particular interest because of their essential roles in processes such as RNA silencing and modifications. Detailed analyses revealed several pathways associated with the function of small RNAs. Although these pathways show evolutional conservation, there are substantial differences. Advanced technologies to profile RNAs have accelerated the field further resulting in the discovery of an increasing number of novel species, suggesting that we are only just beginning to appreciate the complexity of small RNAs and their functions. Here, we review recent progress in novel small RNA exploration, including discovered small RNA species, their pathways, and devised technologies.

PMID:
18225959
PMCID:
PMC2213711
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pgen.0040022
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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