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Opinion

The mammalian transcriptome and the function of non-coding DNA sequences

Svetlana A Shabalina1* and Nikolay A Spiridonov2

Author Affiliations

1 National Center for Biotechnology Information, National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20894, USA

2 Division of Therapeutic Proteins, Center for Drug Evaluation and Research, US Food and Drug Administration, Bethesda MD 20892, USA

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Genome Biology 2004, 5:105  doi:

Published: 25 March 2004

Abstract

For decades, researchers have focused most of their attention on protein-coding genes and proteins. With the completion of the human and mouse genomes and the accumulation of data on the mammalian transcriptome, the focus now shifts to non-coding DNA sequences, RNA-coding genes and their transcripts. Many non-coding transcribed sequences are proving to have important regulatory roles, but the functions of the majority remain mysterious.