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University of Minnesota RNA Supergroup


We are a community of RNA researchers who employ a wide range of techniques to study RNA function and disorders using approaches spanning from the atomic to organismal levels. RNA research is at highpoint of discovery with enormous impact on our understanding of biology and disease. These advances are being fueled by rapid advances in genomics and next generation sequencing, bioinformatics, genome editing, and imaging technologies.

On the biological and biomedical importance of RNA:

The biomolecule RNA (Ribonucleic Acid) plays diverse roles in biology, including these prime examples:

  • RNA has central roles in the transmission and decoding of genetic information.
  • RNA serves as a genome for viruses that have huge economic and health impacts. 
  • RNA catalyzes crucial biochemical reactions. 
  • RNA provides a structural framework for macromolecular machines. 
  • RNA molecules act in cis or in trans to control gene expression and biochemical processes.
  • Dysfunction and dysregulation of RNA underlie diseases including cancer, immune disorders, neurodegeneration, diabetes, and viral diseases.