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The miRNA Registry provides a service for the assignment of miRNA gene names prior to publication. A comprehensive and searchable database of published miRNA sequences is accessible via a web interface (, and all sequence and annotation data are freely available for download. Release 2.0 of the database contains 506 miRNA entries from six organisms.[1]

The miRBase database aims to provide integrated interfaces to comprehensive microRNA sequence data, annotation and predicted gene targets. miRBase takes over functionality from the microRNA Registry and fulfils three main roles: the miRBase Registry acts as an independent arbiter of microRNA gene nomenclature, assigning names prior to publication of novel miRNA sequences. miRBase Sequences is the primary online repository for miRNA sequence data and annotation. miRBase Targets is a comprehensive new database of predicted miRNA target genes. miRBase is available at[2]

The miRBase Sequence database is the primary repository for published microRNA (miRNA) sequence and annotation data. miRBase provides a user-friendly web interface for miRNA data, allowing the user to search using key words or sequences, trace links to the primary literature referencing the miRNA discoveries, analyze genomic coordinates and context, and mine relationships between miRNA sequences. miRBase also provides a confidential gene-naming service, assigning official miRNA names to novel genes before their publication. The methods outlined in this chapter describe these functions. miRBase is freely available to all at[3]

miRBase is the central online repository for microRNA (miRNA) nomenclature, sequence data, annotation and target prediction. The current release (10.0) contains 5071 miRNA loci from 58 species, expressing 5922 distinct mature miRNA sequences: a growth of over 2000 sequences in the past 2 years. miRBase provides a range of data to facilitate studies of miRNA genomics: all miRNAs are mapped to their genomic coordinates. Clusters of miRNA sequences in the genome are highlighted, and can be defined and retrieved with any inter-miRNA distance. The overlap of miRNA sequences with annotated transcripts, both protein- and non-coding, are described. Finally, graphical views of the locations of a wide range of genomic features in model organisms allow for the first time the prediction of the likely boundaries of many miRNA primary transcripts. miRBase is available at[4]

Although the majority of gene function studies center themselves around protein-encoding RNAs, the study of non-protein-encoding RNAs is becoming more widespread because of the discovery of hundreds of small RNA termed micro (mi) RNA that have regulator functions within cells. Currently, over 470 human miRNA genes are predicted to exist and are annotated within the "miRBase" public miRNA database ( ). There is no denying that short interfering (si) and short hairpin (sh) RNAs have revolutionized how scientists approach understanding gene function; however, si and shRNAs are not effective for analyzing the function of miRNAs given that miRNAs are typically short (17-24 bases). In turn, new sets of agents that allow for the expression of miRNA above endogenous levels and inhibition of miRNAs have become a valuable technology for the study of these small regulatory RNAs. In this chapter, we provide step-by-step methods on how to utilize synthetic precursor and antisense inhibitor molecules for understanding miRNA function.[5]

miRBase is the central repository for microRNA (miRNA) sequence information. miRBase has a role in defining the nomenclature for miRNA genes and assigning names to novel miRNAs for publication in peer-reviewed journals. The online miRBase database is a resource containing all published miRNA sequences, together with textual annotation and links to the primary literature and to other secondary databases. The database provides a variety of methods to query the data, by specific searches of sequences and associated text and literature. All miRBase data are also available for download from the miRBase FTP site.[6]

miRBase is the primary online repository for all microRNA sequences and annotation. The current release (miRBase 16) contains over 15,000 microRNA gene loci in over 140 species, and over 17,000 distinct mature microRNA sequences. Deep-sequencing technologies have delivered a sharp rise in the rate of novel microRNA discovery. We have mapped reads from short RNA deep-sequencing experiments to microRNAs in miRBase and developed web interfaces to view these mappings. The user can view all read data associated with a given microRNA annotation, filter reads by experiment and count, and search for microRNAs by tissue- and stage-specific expression. These data can be used as a proxy for relative expression levels of microRNA sequences, provide detailed evidence for microRNA annotations and alternative isoforms of mature microRNAs, and allow us to revisit previous annotations. miRBase is available online at:[7]

We describe an update of the miRBase database (, the primary microRNA sequence repository. The latest miRBase release (v20, June 2013) contains 24 521 microRNA loci from 206 species, processed to produce 30 424 mature microRNA products. The rate of deposition of novel microRNAs and the number of researchers involved in their discovery continue to increase, driven largely by small RNA deep sequencing experiments. In the face of these increases, and a range of microRNA annotation methods and criteria, maintaining the quality of the microRNA sequence data set is a significant challenge. Here, we describe recent developments of the miRBase database to address this issue. In particular, we describe the collation and use of deep sequencing data sets to assign levels of confidence to miRBase entries. We now provide a high confidence subset of miRBase entries, based on the pattern of mapped reads. The high confidence microRNA data set is available alongside the complete microRNA collection at We also describe embedding microRNA-specific Wikipedia pages on the miRBase website to encourage the microRNA community to contribute and share textual and functional information.[8]


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    , Curr Protoc Bioinformatics, 2010 Mar, Volume Chapter 12, p.Unit 12.9.1-10, (2010)
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    Kozomara, Ana, and Griffiths-Jones Sam
    , Nucleic Acids Res, 2014 Jan, Volume 42, Issue Database issue, p.D68-73, (2014)