An increasing number of studies have demonstrated that neural RNA-binding proteins (nRNABPs) participate in several steps of neural development through posttranscriptional regulation of their RNA targets (Grabowski Curr Opin Genet Dev 21:388–394, 2011). Classical genetics and in vitro biochemical approaches have identified several important RNA targets of nRNABPs linked to cell-fate decision and neuronal functions. In recent years, new technologies, such as unbiased in vivo protein–RNA interaction approaches, high-throughput sequencing-cross-linked immunoprecipitation (HITS-CLIP), microarrays, RNAseq and others, have been developed. The use of these with genetics has succeeded in defining a dynamic range of RNA targets of RNABPs at the transcriptome-wide level. This new platform also provides the mechanistic insights into a specific biological function of nRNABPs. This review highlights the discoveries and challenges of the interplay between the nRNABPs and their biological functions in neural development.
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