UNIT 26.1 Overview of RNA Interference and Related Processes

  1. David Baulcombe

Published Online: 1 MAY 2003

DOI: 10.1002/0471142727.mb2601s62

Current Protocols in Molecular Biology

Current Protocols in Molecular Biology

How to Cite

Baulcombe, D. 2003. Overview of RNA Interference and Related Processes. Current Protocols in Molecular Biology. 62:26.1:26.1.1–26.1.6.

Author Information

  1. The Sainsbury Laboratory John Innes Center, Norwich, United Kingdom

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 1 MAY 2003
  2. Published Print: APR 2003

This is not the most recent version of the article. View current version (1 OCT 2015)


The history of RNA interference (RNAi) has unfolded rapidly since 1997 with a series of discoveries from plants, fungi, and animals. Initially, the interest was directed towards development of gene silencing technology that could be applied in research, medical therapy, and crop improvement. However, as the underlying mechanism was revealed, it became apparent that RNAi manifests a novel system of genetic regulation that was only hinted at by previous data. This overview unit gives a brief history of the field, describes the natural role of RNAi and related processes, identifies strategies for RNAi and cosuppression in plants and animals, and describes methods for detection and characterization of siRNA and miRNA.