Film splicing (as a metaphor for RNA splicing)

Mechanisms of RNA processing and splicing

In this issue, we feature studies on RNA processing, including mechanisms of mRNA splicing, biogenesis of the splicing machinery, mRNA decoding by the ribosome, and mRNA deadenylation for degradation.



  • NSMB cover

    January 2024 marks 30 years since we published the first volume of NSMB. We will be celebrating this milestone throughout 2024, reflecting on the road covered and looking towards the future.

  • NSMB cover first issue

    In January 2024, NSMB will celebrate the 30th anniversary of publishing its first issue. To celebrate, we would like to give our readers, center stage and invite you to send us your comments and letters to the editors, reflecting both on the past and the upcoming years. Details:

Nature Structural & Molecular Biology is a Transformative Journal; authors can publish using the traditional publishing route OR via immediate gold Open Access.

Our Open Access option complies with funder and institutional requirements.


  • Macromolecules are involved in myriads of interactions that regulate their cellular function. While years of structural biology progress was built by reducing this complexity, a molecular understanding of biological processes requires the characterization of ever larger and more dynamic molecular assemblies. Cryo-electron microscopy is rising to this challenge.

    • Eva Nogales
  • This issue of Nature Structural & Molecular Biology presents studies investigating RNA processing, including mechanisms of splicing, biogenesis of the splicing machinery, decoding of mRNA by the ribosome, and deadenylation of mRNA for degradation. We are also delighted to be publishing News & Views and Comment pieces that reflect on these exciting advances in the field.

  • Since Nature Structural and Molecular Biology was started 30 years ago, our understanding of transcription and mRNA processing has been revolutionized through structural and mechanistic studies. Here, we present our personal views of the advances in understanding the production of mature eukaryotic mRNAs over the past decade.

    • Lori A. Passmore
    • Suyang Zhang
  • The first membrane protein structure was reported almost 40 years ago. In this issue, we are publishing a set of papers that serve to underline the incredible advances in our understanding of the biology of these multifaceted molecular machines.

  • G protein-coupled receptors (GPCRs) with no known endogenous ligand are termed orphans. Deorphanization of a GPCR involves identifying the ligand, which can be a painstaking exercise. In this Comment, we discuss the challenges in the process, its role in drug discovery and alternative approaches to characterizing orphan GPCRs.

    • Nicola J. Smith
    • Fiona Murray
  • The identification of sodium and potassium currents as underlying action potential propagation, more than 70 years ago, opened a new avenue of research into the role of ion channels. In this Comment, we present our personal perspectives of the field, from the identification of Shaker as a potential potassium channel to the mechanistic insights available to us today.

    • Lily Yeh Jan
    • Yuh Nung Jan