Introduction – RNA Basics

by Kevin Ahern, PhD

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    00:01 Of the three molecules participating in the central dogma: DNA, RNA and proteins; RNA probably has the most diverse set of functions of any of them.

    00:10 In this talk I will give some background about the different types of RNA, discuss the structures and functions of the various RNAs, and then give an example of gene expression in a prokaryotic system.

    00:22 Now RNA, of course, is made from DNA in the process of transcription and the copy of DNA is made into RNA using the nucleotides U, G, C and A.

    00:33 RNA is processed by various enzymes known as RNAses.

    00:37 And RNA can also be completely broken down by various other RNAses.

    00:41 So it's a relatively unstable molecule to work with.

    00:45 Some viruses like HIV or measles and flu virus actually use RNA as their genetic material and not DNA.

    00:53 So the role of RNA in the central dogma is central to the central dogma.

    01:00 Now the central dogma, of course, says that DNA copies itself, DNA makes RNA and RNA can in some cases go back to DNA by reverse transcriptase, as we have seen.

    01:11 But more importantly RNA goes and makes protein and that protein is essential, as we have seen, for all living cells.

    About the Lecture

    The lecture Introduction – RNA Basics by Kevin Ahern, PhD is from the course RNA and the Genetic Code.

    Included Quiz Questions

    1. It is made by transcribing DNA
    2. It requires multiple RNA polymerases in E. coli
    3. It is synthesized starting at an origin
    4. It is able to make fewer base pairings than DNA

    Author of lecture Introduction – RNA Basics

     Kevin Ahern, PhD

    Kevin Ahern, PhD

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