Providing access to expertise in the school of Computing Sciences.


Analysing small RNA data with the UEA sRNA Workbench

Business Challenge

RNA silencing is a complex, highly-conserved, transcriptional and post-transcriptional mechanism that tunes gene expression. It is mediated by molecules known as small RNAs (sRNAs). Well-known examples of sRNAs include short-interfering RNA (siRNA), microRNAs (miRNAs), trans-acting short-interfering RNA (tasi-RNA) and Piwi-interacting RNA (piRNA). It was originally studied as a defence mechanism against pathogens in plants and later studied extensively due to its ability to regulate cancer-related genes.

Our Solution

Our application enables the user to perform a complete analysis of single or multiple-sample sRNA datasets from both plants and animals to identify interesting genomic landmarks (such as detection of novel miRNA sequences).

The application can pre-process and analyse data, but also offers extensive visualisation functionality for creation of publication ready images, or for downstream analysis of results by eye.

The application is written in a platform independent language. No installation and no dependencies are required. To execute any version of the software in GUI mode simply extract all files in the zip archive and launch the sRNAWorkbenchStartup.jar program found within your extracted directory.

Business Benefits

Researchers working in the School of Biology at UEA as well as other research institutions world wide have utilised the system to investigate new and interesting members of small RNA classes and to direct further wet-lab studies. Future research aims to incorporate new techniques for sRNA analysis and visualisation of sRNA networks.

More Detail

For further information visit the UEA sRNA Workbench website.