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Brief Bioinform. 2017 Jan;18(1):9-27. doi: 10.1093/bib/bbv114. Epub 2016 Feb 2.

Computational recognition for long non-coding RNA (lncRNA): Software and databases.


Since the completion of the Human Genome Project, it has been widely established that most DNA is not transcribed into proteins. These non-protein-coding regions are believed to be moderators within transcriptional and post-transcriptional processes, which play key roles in the onset of diseases. Long non-coding RNAs (lncRNAs) are generally lacking in conserved motifs typically used for detection and thus hard to identify, but nonetheless present certain characteristic features that can be exploited by bioinformatics methods. By combining lncRNA detection with known miRNA, RNA-binding protein and chromatin interaction, current tools are able to recognize and functionally annotate large number of lncRNAs. This review discusses databases and platforms dedicated to cataloging and annotating lncRNAs, as well as tools geared at discovering novel sequences. We emphasize the issues posed by the diversity of lncRNAs and their complex interaction mechanisms, as well as technical issues such as lack of unified nomenclature. We hope that this wide overview of existing platforms and databases might help guide biologists toward the tools they need to analyze their experimental data, while our discussion of limitations and of current lncRNA-related methods may assist in the development of new computational tools.


algorithms; bioinformatics; databases; long non-coding RNA

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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