HOME >> BIOLOGY >> NEWS
Nanotech instruments allow first direct observations of RNA 'proofreading'

When Ralph Waldo Emerson said that nature pardons no mistakes, he wasn't thinking about RNA polymerase (RNAP) - the versatile enzyme that copies genes from DNA onto strands of RNA, which then serve as templates for all of the proteins that make life possible.

Emerson's comment notwithstanding, RNAP makes plenty of mistakes but also proofreads and corrects them before they have a chance to create abnormal proteins. The error-prone nature of RNAP is not surprising given the size of its task. In human cells, for example, the RNAP enzyme has to make precise genetic copies from a DNA double helix that consists of billions of chemical bases known as A, T, G and C. It works like this: After latching onto the double helix, RNAP pulls it apart and starts building new RNA molecules by copying one DNA base at a time.

With thousands of A's, T's, G's and C's to transcribe, RNAP sometimes gets confused and copies the wrong base. Such errors occur roughly once every 1,000 bases, but RNAP's remarkable self-correcting mechanism manages to catch most of them.

''If the error is allowed to propagate, it could result in a bad protein or a wrong protein, but RNAP is an incredibly smart enzyme,'' says Steven M. Block, a professor of biological sciences and of applied physics at Stanford University. ''When RNAP adds the wrong base, it backs up on the DNA helix a little bit, cleaves off the piece of RNA that has the bad base in it and starts up again. That's the hypothesis, at least.''

New experiments

In a new study in the journal Nature, Block and his colleagues present strong evidence to support this proofreading hypothesis. Their results - based on actual observations of individual molecules of RNAP - are posted on Nature's website: http://www.nature.com. In another set of experiments published in the Nov. 14 issue of Cell magazine, the researchers discovered that RNAP makes thousands of brief pause
'"/>

Contact: Mark Shwartz
mshwartz@stanford.edu
650-723-9296
Stanford University
25-Nov-2003


Page: 1 2 3 4

Related biology news :

1. National Academies Advisory: Sept. 18-19 Nanotechnology Conference
2. Nanotechnology pioneer slays grey goo myths
3. Nanotechnology highlights from the ACS national meeting in Anaheim, Calif., March 28-April 1
4. Nanotechnology: sink or swim?
5. Nanotech strategy could create new organs
6. Nanotech decoys for viruses
7. NCAR aircraft, ground instruments to track carbon dioxide uptake
8. Acoustic technique could disinfect medical instruments without heat or harsh chemicals
9. ORNL conducting field test of instruments to detect lead
10. Computer database being developed at Temple will allow for better inventory of chemicals
11. Gene duplication allowed pigs to have more babies

Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:7/4/2020)... ... July 03, 2020 , ... ... earn outstanding recognition and multiple awards for not only the products and treatments ... SoME® Skincare and Vivace® Microneedle RF. All the brands built by ABM have ...
(Date:6/28/2020)... , ... June 25, 2020 ... ... enterprise software solutions for biopharmaceutical R&D, today announced that it has entered ... innovative, full-length multispecific antibodies (Multiclonics®), to support their translational and clinical research ...
(Date:6/23/2020)... ... ... The field of quantitation of large molecules or proteins has been around for a ... of mass spectrometry in this field has gained a lot of momentum in the ... approach to use (LBA or MS)?” In many cases, either technology can answer ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:7/10/2020)... LEXINGTON, Mass. (PRWEB) , ... July 09, 2020 ... ... novel approaches to cell therapy, today announced the hiring of Allen R. Nissenson, ... executive team and oversee the clinical development of Sentien’s lead product, SBI-101. ...
(Date:7/1/2020)... ... June 30, 2020 , ... ... that the launch of a new clinical diagnostics immuno-oncology service, TissueInsight ... microenvironment (TME). , “Flagship’s TissueInsight is a service that aids pathologists, oncologists, ...
(Date:6/23/2020)... ... , ... Kerafast Inc. , developers of an online ... of the Delta-G-VSV Pseudotyping System for coronavirus research applications. The system, developed by ... entry and COVID-19 vaccine effectiveness at just biosafety level 2 (BSL-2) containment. , ...
(Date:6/19/2020)... (PRWEB) , ... June 18, 2020 , ... The ... Its goal is to join forces to radically prolong life and find a way ... the aging period. This project was supported by various scientists from all over the ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
Cached News: