Special Issue "Current Trends in MicroRNA Research: From Basics to Applications"

A special issue of Non-Coding RNA (ISSN 2311-553X).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 31 August 2021.

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Osamu Ishibashi
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Laboratory of Biological Macromolecules, Department of Applied Life Sciences, Graduate School of Life & Environmental Sciences, Osaka Prefecture University, 1 1 Gakuen cho, Sakai 599 8531, Japan
Interests: non-coding RNA; microRNA; biomarker; molecular diagnosis; thyroid cancer; transcriptome

Special Issue Information

Dear colleague,

MicroRNAs (miRNAs) are small non-coding RNAs of 19–24 nucleotides in length. In 1993, the first miRNA, lin-4, was discovered in Caenorhabditis elegans (C. elegans), and thereafter, scores of miRNAs have been identified to date in plants, animals, and other eukaryotes. Some of these miRNAs were shown to be highly conserved among species. Many miRNAs are ubiquitously expressed in organisms; however, some are known to exhibit specific expression patterns in organ- or cell-type-dependent manners, indicating specific roles in cells and/or organs.

It is generally known that miRNAs bind to specific sites in the 3’-UTRs of their target mRNAs, which leads to mRNA degradation or translational repression. Recent studies have shown that miRNA binding sites have also been identified within other mRNA regions such as 5’-UTRs and coding sequences. Interestingly, some studies have also shown that miRNAs actually mediate the upregulation of gene expression under specific conditions. Furthermore, several studies have indicated that long noncoding RNAs can act as miRNA sponges, competitively inhibiting miRNA-mediated gene silencing. Thus, the miRNA–mRNA regulatory network is thought to be more complicated than expected.

MiRNAs are involved in a variety of biological processes, and their aberrant expression is associated with human, animal, and plant diseases. MiRNAs dysregulated in many types of cancers, also called “onco-miRs”, have been well studied, and some of them have been suggested to be possible therapeutic targets for cancers. Furthermore, miRNAs have been shown to be secreted from human cells via tiny vesicles called exosomes. Therefore, miRNAs are expected to be able to serve as biomarkers of specific cancer types.

In this Special Issue, we would like to focus on cutting-edge research on miRNA biosynthesis and miRNA-mediated gene regulation. We welcome not only studies focusing on basics but also those based on applications.

Dr. Osamu Ishibashi
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Non-Coding RNA is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


  • microRNA (miRNA)
  • miRNA-mRNA regulatory network
  • onco-miR

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission, see below for planned papers.

Planned Papers

The below list represents only planned manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have not been received by the Editorial Office yet. Papers submitted to MDPI journals are subject to peer-review.

Title: microRNA binding preference of double-stranded RNA binding protein
Authors: Kumiko Ui-Tei
Affiliation: Department of Biological Sciences, Graduate School of Science, The University of Tokyo, Japan

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