Motivation: Small nucleolar RNAs (snoRNAs) are an abundant class of non-coding RNAs with a wide variety of cellular functions including chemical modification of RNA, telomere maintanance, pre-rRNA processing and regulatory activities in alternative splicing. The main role of box C/D snoRNAs is to determine the targets for 2'-O-ribose methylation, which is important for rRNA maturation and splicing regulation of some mRNAs. The targets are still unknown, however, for many 'orphan' snoRNAs. While a fast and efficient target predictor for box H/ACA snoRNAs is available, no comparable tool exists for box C/D snoRNAs, even though they bind to their targets in a much less complex manner.
Results: PLEXY is a dynamic programming algorithm that computes thermodynamically optimal interactions of a box C/D snoRNA with a putative target RNA. Implemented as scanner for large input sequences and equipped with filters on the duplex structure, PLEXY is an efficient and reliable tool for the prediction of box C/D snoRNA target sites.
Availability: The perl script PLEXY is freely available at http://www.bioinf.uni-leipzig.de/Software/PLEXY.