DNA, RNA and the Genetic Code: DNA Replication and Transcription II

by Kevin Ahern, PhD

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    In the central dogma, the process of translation is the most important part, because that's where the protein is synthesized using the information encoded in the DNA and brought in by the messenger RNA. In this module I'll talk about that process, starting first with the structure of the three different RNAs that play important roles and then moving to the actual translation process itself. Now, in the process of a transcription and translation, particularly translation, there are three major RNAs that are necessary. One of those RNAs is transfer RNA as can be seen in this slide. Transfer RNAs have an interesting and distinctive structure. First of all, they're not very long, you can see the entire sequence of a transfer RNA on the screen here. In addition you'll notice that the transfer RNA existing as one strand is actually forming base pairs with itself and the base pairs it forms with itself gives the transfer RNA a distinctive structure. Now the transfer RNA has different regions that have different names. So we can see in this transfer RNA for example, that it has a five prime and on the left at the top and a three prime end on the right at the top. The three prime end terminates in the sequence CCA and that's true for virtually every transfer RNA. Attached to that A at the three prime end is the place where an amino acid is attached. Now that's critical because the transfer RNA of course carries amino acids to the ribosome for the purpose of translation. The stem by which it is located is known as the acceptor stem, the loop to the right is called the pseudouridine loop because it's named for one of the unusual bases that's found in transfer RNAs. Transfer RNAs...

    About the Lecture

    The lecture DNA, RNA and the Genetic Code: DNA Replication and Transcription II by Kevin Ahern, PhD is from the course Biochemistry: Basics. It contains the following chapters:

    • Structure of tRNA & rRNA
    • Genetic Code
    • tRNA Charging & Ribosomes
    • Translation

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. ...contain many chemically modified bases.
    2. ...have a codon loop opposite of the part of the molecule where the amino acid is carried.
    3. ...have an amino acid attached to the 5’ end.
    4. ...carry ribosomes to the protein being made.
    1. ...have extensive secondary structures.
    2. ...catalyze the formation of themselves.
    3. ...code for protein using the genetic code.
    4. ...are smaller than tRNAs.
    1. ...is the same in E. coli as it is in humans.
    2. ...uses a 3 base sequence in mRNAs called the anti-codon.
    3. ...is “read” by the ribosome to make RNA from DNA.
    4. ...is carried by rRNAs.
    1. It contains 20 codons - one for each amino acid.
    2. It includes one start codon and three stop codons.
    3. It is redundant.
    4. It is almost exactly the same in every cell.
    1. ...makes peptide bonds.
    2. ...makes phosphodiester bonds.
    3. ...involves synthesis of RNA from DNA.
    4. ...uses RNA polymerase.

    Author of lecture DNA, RNA and the Genetic Code: DNA Replication and Transcription II

     Kevin Ahern, PhD

    Kevin Ahern, PhD

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