, Volume 53, Issue 2, pp 149-158
Date: 03 Sep 2011

Current approaches to micro-RNA analysis and target gene prediction

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It is becoming increasingly evident that micro-RNAs (miRNA) play a significant role in regulating the cellular machinery. These ∼22-nt non-coding RNAs function as negative regulators of gene expression. Since their discovery, considerable information has been obtained on miRNA biology and the mechanism of their action. Guidelines have been established for miRNA nomenclature and databases have been built to house all miRNA from many species. A number of methodologies are available for miRNA analysis. There is a lot of interest in developing bioinformatics approaches to predict miRNA target genes. This article will bring together the information on our current knowledge of miRNA biology, the approaches for miRNA analysis, and computational strategies to gain insight in miRNA functional roles.