DATABASES: Let It sno

Science  07 Oct 2005:
Vol. 310, Issue 5745, pp. 27
DOI: 10.1126/science.310.5745.27d

Like the rough cut of a movie, a newly minted ribosomal RNA (rRNA) molecule needs fine-tuning before it's ready for release. Enter the small nucleolar RNAs, or snoRNAs, which team with proteins to snip rRNA into usable segments and modify its nucleotide bases. Researchers will find a flurry of information on these molecular editors at this pair of databases.

For profiles of more than 350 human snoRNAs, check out this clearinghouse* at the Laboratoire de Biologie Moléculaire Eucaryote in Toulouse, France. Search for a particular snoRNA to read a description of the molecule and find its sequence, size, and target. You can also scan rRNA and other types of RNA molecules to learn which bases get modified and what snoRNA makes the revision. For similar data on Arabidopsis thaliana and 17 other plant and algae species, drop by this site from the Scottish Crop Research Institute in Invergowrie.

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