Date published:

RNAcentral - a portal dedicated to biology of noncoding RNAs

For several years scientists interested in ribonucleic acids (RNA) research from leading laboratories from all over the world work on development of standards for storing and integrating of the noncoding RNA (ncRNA) data. In 2021, with support from members of the Department of Computational Biology AMU (dr Maciej Szymanski and prof. Wojciech Karlowski), a new version of the RNAcentral database that allows access to the recent information about ncRNA from wide range of organisms was developed and presented in Nucleic Acids Research.

The article presents RNAcentral platform - a universal site that provides access to 44 RNA resources and more than 18 milion of ncRNA sequences from a wide range of organisms and RNA types. In the new version of the database the authors included information about secondary (2D) structure for more than 13 million sequences, making RNAcentral the world's largest RNA 2D structure database. The publication describes also updates to the user interface that improve access to the portal data. For example, the sequence similarity search has been updated with a faster interface featuring facets for filtering search results. The sequence search tool is now also available as a reusable web component, and has been integrated into several RNAcentral members databases, including Rfam, miRBase and snoDB. To allow for a more fine-grained assignment of RNA types and subtypes, all RNAcentral sequences have been annotated with Sequence Ontology (SO) therms. The RNAcentral continues to grow and provide a central resource for scientific community.