The research article has been a frequently researched genre in the journal of ＂English for Specific Purposes＂. The purpose of this paper is to provide an overview of the research on research articles published in the journal in order to facilitate novice academic writers' and ESP practitioners' use of the existing research results, and help ESP researchers see where they are in the research on research articles. We found that 85 of the 448 original research articles in the 97 issues of the journal published from 1986 to 2012 are concerned with research articles. The 85 articles are then divided into two main categories: Text-based research investigating the features of the research article and learning/learner-centered studies exploring non-native English writers' research article writing. In the text-based studies, 20 of the 24 two-digit disciplines in the ＂UNESCO Nomenclature＂ (1988) for classification of research papers and doctoral dissertations have been concerned with original research articles. Several trends in the research on research articles in this journal are revealed and the implications for future research in RAs are set out.