Although much is known about the physiological responses of many environmental stresses in tolerant animals, studies evaluating the regulation of stress-induced mechanisms that regulate the transitions to and from this state are beginning to explore new and fascinating areas of molecular research. Current findings have developed a general, but refined, view of the important molecular pathways contributing to stress-survival. However, studies utilizing newly developed technologies that broadly focus on genomic and proteomic screening are beginning to identify many new targets for future study. This minireview will provide a contextual overview on the use of DNA/RNA sequencing, microRNA annotation and prediction software, protein structure and function prediction tools, as well as methods of high-throughput protein expression analysis. We will also use select examples to highlight the existing use of these technologies in stress biology research. Such tools can be used in comparative stress biology in the characterization of animal responses to environmental challenges. Although there are many areas of study left to be explored, research in comparative stress biology will always be continuing as new technologies allow the further analysis of cell function, and new paradigms in gene regulation and regulatory molecules (such as microRNAs) are continuing to be discovered. Building upon the findings of past research, while utilizing new technologies in the appropriate manner, future studies can be carried out in new and exciting areas still unexplored. Proper use of rapidly developing technologies will help to create a complete understanding of the animal stress response and survival mechanisms utilized by many diverse organisms.

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Keywords Microarray, Multiplex, Protein structure, RNA sequencing, Stress biology
Persistent URL
Journal Computational and Structural Biotechnology Journal
Biggar, K.K, & Storey, K. (2014). New Approaches to Comparative and Animal Stress Biology Research in the Post-genomic Era: A Contextual Overview. Computational and Structural Biotechnology Journal, 11(19), 138–146. doi:10.1016/j.csbj.2014.09.006