Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Central Dogma of Genetics Updated

The central dogma of genetics describes the way our genetic code creates our body. There's no better way to describe this than with a picture. Also knowing me I will over explain everything and confuse everyone.

Source: http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/d/dd/Extended_Central_Dogma_with_Enzymes.jpg/550px-Extended_Central_Dogma_with_Enzymes.jpg

Without this process our genes would almost be useless. DNA can replicate itself, which is how complex organisms are multicellular yet still the same individual organism. DNA can also be transcribed into RNA. When I first started my degree I thought all RNA was translated into proteins. Turns out it's not! While 90% of the RNA transcribed is made into proteins (or so my textbook tells me), the other 10% can be made into structural components of molecules (like ribosomes).

I really can't think of much more to say on this topic, I think the picture covers it all! Do you know the difference between transcription and translation? What about the difference between a polypeptide and a protein (I just learned this today)?

I forgot to answer yesterday's questions!! Good job Sky Luke Corbelli for answering both them correctly! It is estimated that humans have around 20,000 to 22,000 genes. This is a significant decrease from the estimated 30,000 to 32,000 they thought before the accomplishment of the human genome project (pre 2003). Plants are more genetically rich than humans because they have much more redundancy in their genome. They still haven't figured out the significance of redundant genes.

And this is for my sister: C is for Connor!!


Gossip_Grl said...

WOW on your topic today on DNA. It sounds like that is what sets human's apart from say the earthworm. Interesting info btw :)

Hazel said...

I have no idea what you just said lol!

Damyanti said...

I had to google you to find you--- I couldn't connect back from the link you left on my blog :)

Thanks for commenting!

--Damyanti, Co-host A to Z Challenge April 2012

Twitter: @AprilA2Z

Suze said...

Transcription is passing information from one medium to another and translation is ...

You got me. Will we find out in later posts?

Matthew MacNish said...

You lost me. LOL.

Spacerguy said...

Isn't translation something like the Universal Translator in Star Trek which decodes a multitude of alien sounds into something we can understand, hehe.

The Writing Goddess said...

I know the difference between a Pepsi and a protein.

Jennifer, sometimes I feel like a semi-intelligent person, and sometimes I read a blog post like yours with a "simple" diagram, and I feel like a chimp, "ooh, look at all the pretty colors." I'm not giving up though. I'll be back.

Jennifer Macfarlan said...

Gossip_Grl - How this process works is simply incredible, thanks for stopping by!

Hazel - I'm so terrible at explaining this :( Sorry!

Damyanti - Thank you for letting me know, I will be sure to fix that!

Suze - You're basically right!! I plan on posting the answers in tomorrows post, unfortunately I forgot to put yesterdays answers in todays :(

Matthew - Sorry! I'm terrible at explaining this, it's a challenging concept that I haven't exactly mastered yet.

Spacerguy - Haha yes exactly! You definitely have the most creative answer.

The Writing Goddess - I'm sorry if I offended you, that wasn't my intention with this :( Thank you for not giving up on me!

Sky Luke Corbelli said...

I really like the picture,
It seems to make things clear!
Transcription writes to RNA
The data we hold dear
This dictionary then is read
By polymerase's hand
Translation writes a protein out
With a polypeptide band
If peptides can chain to create
The big old poly-p's
Then I imagine a protein
Has at least one of these

(In case that wasn't clear, I'm saying that a protein is one or more polypeptide chain)

There is one thing that I believe
I would like to be told
If DNA writes RNA,
How much does RNA hold?

(That is, I assume that RNA contains the information to replicate the DNA that wrote it, which necessitates that it contains information on function and structure, as well as instructions on assembly. So how much larger is it than the parent DNA?)

Jennifer Macfarlan said...

You are close with the answer to my question, but that isn't quite it.

DNA replication actually does not involve RNA. It involves many proteins which are produced from mRNA (messenger RNA). RNA is much smaller than DNA because DNA contains somewhere upwards of 90% noncoding regions. After the mRNA has been manufactured the noncoding regions located in between the coding regions are taken out.

I hope that answers your question! Also, that poem is great!

Pa Ul said...

Good post for C and health details.
do check out my C at GAC a-z.

Tracy Makara said...

Interesting post! BTW your sister is adorable :)

MOV said...

great post, very informative! found you on the a to z, will definitely be back to read more.

feel free to take a peek at my travel theme blog if you have time (or even if you are still procrastinating):