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Comparative and Functional Genomics
Volume 2012, Article ID 957607, 9 pages
Research Article

Identification and Characterization of MicroRNAs in Macaca fascicularis by EST Analysis

1Jiangsu Engineering Research Center for MicroRNA Biology and Biotechnology, State Key Laboratory of Pharmaceutical Biotechnology, School of Life Sciences, Nanjing University, Nanjing 210093, China
2Institute of Discovery Biology, Jiangsu Simcere Pharmaceutical R&D Co., Ltd., 699-18 Xuan Wu Avenue, Nanjing 210042, China

Received 16 February 2012; Revised 16 April 2012; Accepted 30 April 2012

Academic Editor: Igor V. Kurochkin

Copyright © 2012 Hao Yang et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small noncoding RNAs which repress gene expression at the posttranscriptional level. In this study, an expressed sequence tag (EST)-based combined method was applied for the detection of miRNAs in Macaca fascicularis which is used as a model animal extensively in medical experiments, particularly those involved with neuroscience and disease. Initially, previously known miRNA sequences from metazoans were used to blast with the EST databases of Macaca fascicularis, and then a range of filtering criteria was conducted to remove some pseudo ones. At last a total of 8 novel conserved miRNAs were identified; their functions were further predicted and analyzed. Together, our study provides insight into miRNAs and their functions in Macaca fascicularis, indicating that the EST analysis is an efficient and affordable alternative approach for identifying novel miRNA candidates.