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Unit 8

DNA

EQ1:
What is the
shape,
structure and
function of
DNA?

DNA
Deoxyribonucleic Acid
A form of nucleic acid
One of the four biological macromolecules
Remember:
Carbohydrates, Proteins, Lipids and
Nucleic Acids
Stores information within the cell, to code
for proteins
Nucleic Acids are composed of Nucleotides.

Nucleotides

Nucleotides
Composed of:
Deoxyribose (A 5-carbon sugar)
Phosphate Group
Nitrogen Base

Nitrogen Bases
Ring-shaped
Contain Nitrogen
DNA has four possible
nitrogen bases:
Adenine
Guanine
Cytosine
Thymine

Nitrogen Bases

Adenine pairs up with Thymine.


Cytosine pairs up with Guanine.

The Double Helix


Nucleotides combine to form two long
chains that intertwine with each other.
Appears as a spiral ladder, or double helix.

The Double Helix


Nitrogen bases are held together by weak
hydrogen bonds.
The sides of the ladder are composed of
deoxyribose and phosphate groups.

The Function of DNA


DNA contains the unique genetic code or
organisms within the code of the nucleotides.

EQ2:
What is DNA
Replication?

Mitosis

Review: DNA during the Cell Cycle


Interphase: DNA replicates
Mitosis:
Prophase: Chromatin coils and thickens to
form chromosomes.
Metaphase: Chromosomes move to the
center of the cell.
Anaphase: Sister chromatids are pulled to
opposite poles during anaphase.
Telophase: Two identical cells are formed.

Review: DNA during the Cell Cycle


Interphase: DNA replicates
Meiosis:
The cell will divide twice, instead of once so
that the chromosome number is reduced by
half.
Four haploid (1/2 chromosomes) cells form.
Each contains a different set of alleles,
leading to increased genetic variation and
diversity, essential for the organism to
adapt to changing environments.

DNA Replication

DNA Replication
DNA cannot leave the nucleus of the cell where it is
stored because it is too large to pass through the
pores of the nuclear membrane.
During replication, enzymes unzip the two strands
of the DNA molecule by breaking the hydrogen
bonds that hold the base pairs together.
Each strand serves as a template for the attachment
of complementary bases.

DNA Replication continued


Then, another enzyme zips up the two new DNA
molecules.
The two new molecules are identical, each
containing one of the parent strands and one newly
made daughter strand.
When the cell replicates, the nuclear membrane
disintegrates and each new daughter cell receives
an identical copy of the parent cells DNA.

DNA Replication

EQ3:
What is the
structure and
function of
RNA?

RNA
Structure

DNA vs. RNA

RNA
Ribonucleic Acid
Like DNA, it is a form of nucleic acid
Unlike DNA, it can leave the nucleus of the cell.
This enables RNA to carry the information from
the DNA to the ribosomes during the process of
transcription.
Nucleic Acids are composed of Nucleotides.
RNA Nucleotides are a single strand composed of:
Sugar: Ribose
Phosphate Group
4 Nitrogen Bases:
Adenine, Guanine, Cytosine and Uracil
Uracil replaces Thymine

DNA
vs.
RNA

Three
Types
of
RNA

Three Types of RNA


RNA helps to build proteins.
1. Messenger RNA (mRNA): Takes the
message from the DNA in the nucleus and
carries it to the ribosomes.
2. Ribosomal RNA (rRNA): Makes up the
ribosomes.
3. Transfer RNA (tRNA): Transports the amino
acids to the ribosomes to be assembled
into proteins.

EQ4:
What is
transcription?

Transcription
Proteins are
synthesized at the
ribosomes from
the DNA code.
Since DNA is
stored in the
nucleus, a
message with the
DNAs code is
transcribed
and sent instead.

Transcription
1. During transcription an enzyme bind to a promoter
site and unzips the two strands of the DNA
molecule by breaking the hydrogen bonds that hold
the base pairs together.
2. One strand serves a template for the attachment of
complementary bases. However, not all the DNA is
transcribed; just the instructions for the protein
that is being synthesized.
3. The single stranded copy of the DNA called
messenger RNA (mRNA) exits the nucleus through
the pores in the nuclear membrane and makes its
way to the ribosome.

EQ5:
What is
translation?

Translation
The mRNA strand serves as the instructions for the
sequence of amino acids that make the protein.
Each three base sequence of mRNA is called a codon.
Each codon specifies a particular amino acid.
A transfer RNA (tRNA) molecule transfers the specified
amino acid from the cytoplasm to the ribosome.
Because tRNA molecules have the complementary bases to
the codon (called an anti codon) on one end of it, they can
bind with the mRNA codons.

Translation continued
The other end of the molecule carries the amino acid that is
specified by the codon.
The next amino acid is brought by another tRNA molecule
and as the tRNA anti-codons bind with the codons on the
mRNA the amino acids are bonded to each other forming the
protein chain.
When a stop codon is reached, the protein is released and
coils up in the structure that will allow it to perform its
function.

EQ6:
What is the
role of DNA
in gene
expression?

DNA/Gene Expression
An expressed gene is a gene that has been
transcribed into RNA.
Only a fraction of the genes in a cell are expressed
at any given time.
Certain DNA sequences serve as promoters and
binding sites for the RNA polymerase (enzyme).
Regulation of gene expression is important in
shaping the way a complex organism develops from
a single fertilized egg.

EQ7:
What are
mutations?

Mutations
Def: Changes to the genetic code caused by
errors in DNA replication.
Occur in both somatic (body) cells or gamete
(reproductive) cells.
When mutations occur in gamete cells, they
can be passed on to subsequent generations

EQ8:
What are the
causes and
consequences
of gene
mutations?

Point Mutation/Sickle Cell Anemia

Point Mutations
Point mutations affect one nucleotide.
If one nucleotide is substituted for another, only one amino
acid is altered.
This may or may not affect the functioning of the protein,
because several codons can code for the same amino acid.
Even the substitution of one amino acid for another may
not affect the function of the protein.
May be spontaneous or caused by mutagens

Frame Shift Mutation


A nucleotide is deleted or inserted.
Every amino acid after that point will be
affected because every codon will be
changed.
Such mutations often alter a protein so that
it is unable to perform its normal functions.

Frame Shift Mutation/Tay Sachs

EQ9:
What
mutagenic
factors exist
in the
environment
and what
effect do they
have?

Mutagens
Def: An agent that can cause a change in the DNA
sequence that in turn affects the expression of a
gene.
Environmental mutagens:
Tobacco
Radiation: Nuclear or UVB
Only if such mutations occur in gamete cells can
they be passed down from one generation to
another.

EQ10:
What is
genetic
engineering?

Genetic Engineering
Process that makes changes in the DNA code of living
organisms.
A DNA fragment containing the wanted gene is joined to a
vector which is used to transfer the gene into the host
organism.
It has been used to engineer bacteria that can break down
pollutants into harmless products, and other bacteria that
can produce medicines, such as human growth hormone and
insulin.
Transgenic animals have been created that are used to study
diseases and the role genes play in an organism.
Plants have been engineered to resist herbicides and to
produce internal pesticides.
Gene therapy has been used to successfully treat SCID.

EQ11:
What is DNA
Sequencing?

DNA Sequencing
Process used to find the nucleotide base sequence in pieces
of DNA.
A complementary DNA strand is made using a small
proportion of fluorescently labeled nucleotides, which stops
the replication process.
The DNA is then separated using electrophoresis and the
DNA sequence can be read from the gel.
It is generally an automated process in labs presently.
It has been used in the Human Genome Project and
Used to identify genes responsible for genetic disorders
such as Alzheimers disease

EQ12:
What is PCR?

PCR
Polymerase chain reaction is a process used to make
multiple copies of genes.
Using primers to start the replication process, DNA is
heated to separate the 2 strands.
It is then cooled to allow the replication process.
This process is repeated for multiple copies.
In forensics, it has been used to amplify the amount of
DNA found at a crime scene.
In medicine, it has been used to simplify the DNA from a
single embryonic cell for rapid diagnosis of genetic
disorders.
It is also used to identify infective agents and genes that
cause disorders such as hemophilia and cystic fibrosis.

EQ13:
What is gel
electrophoresis?

Gel Electrophoresis
Procedure used to separate and analyze DNA
fragments.
Mixture of DNA fragments are placed at the end of
a porous gel.
An electrical voltage is applied to the gel to separate
the fragments.
DNA fingerprinting has been used to determine
paternity and to identify the DNA at crime scenes.

The End

Unit 8
DNA