Emerging Technologies to Study Long Non-coding RNAs

  • Fereshteh Jahaniani
  • Varsha Rao
  • Stephanie Nevins
  • Damek Spacek
  • Neal Bharadwaj
  • Jason Reuter
  • Michael Snyder
Chapter

Abstract

It has been less than half a century since Robert W. Holley et al. used 140 kg of commercial baker’s yeast to characterize the first noncoding RNA (ncRNA), alanine tRNA. Now, 48 years later, advancements in genomic technologies have enabled scientists to study genomes, transcriptomes, and proteomes, on an unprecedented and high-throughput scale, and even at the single cell resolution. These discoveries have completely changed the classical view of the central dogma of molecular biology, as we now understand that protein coding genes account for less than 2 % of human genome, however, the vast majority of the genome is transcribed (Clark et al. 2011) {Lander, 2001 #41}. This means that the bulk of the genome encodes for ncRNA molecules, which can be further categorized into housekeeping and regulatory ncRNAs. The latter can be broadly classified based on their size as small ncRNAs (< 200 bp) and long noncoding RNAs (lncRNAs) (> 200 bp) (Nagano and Fraser 2011; Ponting et al. 2009). Many of the small ncRNAs have been identified and their mechanism of action has been heavily studied. However, the journey to study the lncRNAs has just begun (Gupta et al. 2010; Wilusz et al. 2009; Derrien et al. 2012).

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Fereshteh Jahaniani
    • 1
  • Varsha Rao
    • 1
  • Stephanie Nevins
    • 1
  • Damek Spacek
    • 1
  • Neal Bharadwaj
    • 1
  • Jason Reuter
    • 1
  • Michael Snyder
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of GeneticsStanford UniversityStanfordUSA

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