THE CELL WAR

Pradeep Apte

THE CELL \MAR....
.

COMMENTS.

.

"I've been p1-eased to read the book"
DR LINUS PAULING

Double Noble laureate "Amusing and instructive _-_'...4G_ ---s'+*mtrsrr

SIR RICHARD

DOLL

Professor Emiritus # Unj-versitY of OXFORD
a lr

-

'l

The rePublic of celt was facing its greatest crisis of alltimes""
A split of the nation was imminent.... DNA's',rePulation for being the alltime master was at stake""

ff/ECEII

WAN

PMDEEP APTE

"Unti1 philosophers are kings, or the kings and princes of this world have the spirit and Power of philosophy,and pol itical greaLness and wisdom meet in one, and those commoner natures ptlrsr-1e either to the exclusion of the other are compelled to stand aside, cities will never have rest from their evils nor nor the human racer ds f believeand then only will this our state have a possibility of life and behold the light of the day"
PLATO TN THE REPUBLTC

/ 375 B"C.

40 YEARS OF THE DOUBLE HELIX

@ PradeeP APte 1993
NEW INDIA BOOKS MEDICARE 4i.15 OLD PAIASIA INDORE 452001 (MP) INDIA

Dedicated to all the scientists who have contributed to any aspect related to the double helix.

110, GOLDEN POINT PALASIACHORAHA INDORE (M.P.)

Printed

bY :

PANDIT PRINTERS
INDORE (M.P.)

Contents

tr Trouble tr The Republic tr The Republic ll o lnveStigdting:thetrouble n Antithesis n Analysing the trouble tr Ordered chaos, evil designs tr Assasination rr The M-Alternative tr Preparing for action tr Armageddon tr Glossary
I

3
7 13

18

28

34
40 44 50
55

59
67

PREFACE
A cell is the basic unit of living organisms, may it be plants or animals. anything living thal we perceivd is composed of cells. Life exists in nature from unicellular organisms to the more complicated multicellular ones. We all are, in fact, orginally conceived as a single cell the zygote, a fusion product of the male and femile sex cells. This zygote undergoes a series of divisions and a complicated procedure termed as 'differentiation' to form the ultimate human being. Several cells of similar type when grouped together form a tissue and these tissues combine to form an organ like the liver or heart. These organs are arranged on the skeletal framework to give rise to the final assembly, the human body. One of the greatest wonders of nature is, that althoulh the individual components of a cell when isolated arJ quite inanate, but when composed into a single unit, life is created.

The study of the structrue and function of a cell has been carried out for centuries and is still going on. It must be said to the credit of the large nurmber of scientists involved in these studies that to-day the cell is. no longer a mystery. A landmark in the histdry of cell biology came in the year 1953, when Watson and Crick presented their model structure of Deoxyribonucleic acid or DNA (which lateron won them the Nobel prize along with Wilkins in 1961,). DNA is the master molecule residing in the nucleus of a cell and governs the entire activities in it. lt was'rh4r-remarkable paper published in 'Nature' (a prestigious scientific journal) that has brought us so close to day to the understanding of the functioning of a cell. The structure and functioning of a cell is probably one of tilt, trest

for the

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organized systems known to man. The greatest tragedy, however has been that although we human
beings are composed of such perfect units in our body,

tend to behave in an unorganized manner and lack integration, we have learnt nothing from our cells. The entire human race to day is scattered, each
country living for its own selfish motives, integration and brotherhood have almost vanished. No single nation in the world can claim to be functioning with perfection and without problems within. Anti-nationalists exist inside the countries itsef. The magnitude may vary, but I doubt country totally devoid of whether there antinationalisE, traitors or defectors. A cell also faces similar problems inthe form of the most dreaded disease Cancer. Cancer is no single disease, both its etiology and effects are very diverse and complex. Many cancer cells are known to produce large arirounts of lactic acid. HoweveL the most coirmon denominator in allthe cases is an uncontrolled division of cells, a process commonly termed as 'metastasis' leading to complete destruction. Anti nationalist activities in a country and the cell cancer relationship is the essence off the analogy drawn in this story. Although quite unavoidable in the present context, but every attempt has been made to keep the technical words ih a low key and understandable to a wider audience. Lastly, the student of classical biochemistry may, places find some fundamentals not conforming to the at norm, for which remain to be forgiven. These deviations have onlv been resorted to maintain the narrative, as the find bbjective in addition to highlighting the analogy stated above is to entertain. PRADEEP APTE INDORE APRIL 1993

is a

I

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TROUBLE lnspector Steroid was on the vigil in h,is car wher' ,beep beep' of his transmitter, he switched he heard the it on

"DtoC.DtoC"
"C to D, I hear You well go on chief" "Come here right away Ster" "UrgenP" "Yes" "l'll be right there in a short while" He switched off the transmitter and wondered brieflv ls to what could be the reason for DNA.to
thought.

rrr",|,*

nim right now, 'must be something serious'' he

Quickly he swung his car and sped steadily

towards the Gene building. The Lipid and Lipoprotein guards at the check oost outsidb tne Gen'e building-had anticipated his uJ they had heard the progressive decline and increase in th6 volume of a shriil silen they so wetl kne.w. in", too wondered as to what brought him back, as he hadlust left on his usual round' As soon as the inspector came they opened the gate and atlowed him through.towards the building'. He Sarked his car at his usua[dloted space and walked biiir.ry towards the main entrance of the building' The Gene building had a mammoth multistoried double nenca structurel I was one of the architectural

I"r"[

*onou'softimeandwhenviewedfromadistance arroii loox"O like a spiral staircase' lt was. quite

impossible to make out the main entrance, which was indented some where within the spirals at the base. lts ipirif ioof. made it appear peculiar, but all the twists and
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turns were deliberately built in order to fox intruders - if and get caught ultimately as each nook and corner of the building were displayed on televised screens in the security room at the base, which was manned round the clock. lnspector Steroid moved towards the man on duty at the reception desk and asked "Where is the chief?" "ln the scanning room and awaiting you sir" He thanked his informer and walked towards the lift that would lead him to the upper floors where the scanning room and the research and analysis division was located. On reaching the door of the scanning room, he uttered his name onto a small square microphone on the side of the door that identified his vocal frequency. He waited for a few seconds as the door slid open, he walked in and the door slid close behind him. lnside the scanning room was a giant display unit that showed about hundred screens arranged in rows of ten that constantly gave a view of the various working points in Cell. DNA sat on a chair in front of the display unit with his arms folded behind his head. He was staring in a reverie at the unit, the inspectors arrival brought him to
his feet. "Come dear Ster, I have been waiting for you, take a look at this ...." He pressed a switch on the console in front of him and suddenly the lower line of ten screens displayed glowing red numbers. Each screen except the first one showed the digits "36" while the first one was showing

there were any. Anybody who had no idea of its geometry was.bound to get lost in the maze of spirals

"Ah! power station one is running on low out put, while the rest are functioning to full capacity" said the
inspector.

"Right Ster, but I have not sent in a 02 order' Normally when we wish to shut down for maintenence or to reduce excess power we run the stations on 02, you know that, so this shut down is unexplained,
Moreover the screens displaying the activrties at Power station One have completely blackened out'

On one of my routine checks I observed this and began to investigate for cause. After considering allthe possibilities I prepared my questionnaire and fed it in o the comPuter and ..."

"And what?" "Come let us see".
They both walked into 16s adiacent room where the computer of the research and analysis division was installed. DNA moved towards the console of a display screen and pressed a button on it and this was whatthe computer had to saY :
REPORT ON POWER STATION ONE UNITS AVA]LABLE ON FULL CAPACITY 36 UNITS AVAILABLE ON SHUT OFF ORDER 02

UNITS AVAIIABLE AT PRESENT 02 STATION NOT FUCTIONING TO FULL CAPACITY
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"02".

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CONVERSTIONS GLUCOSE

FROM START

POINT

OPTION I.ACTATE AS UNDER SFIUT OFF ORDER SPEED OF MOVEMENT RATHER HIGH

TO SS PYRUVATE TO SHUT OFF

AND SS CITRATE DATA INSUFFICIENT TO ANALYSE CAUSE

BLOCK POSSIBLE BETVVEEN SS PYRUVATE

prolonged silence.

The inspector was the first to speak after a
"weil LDH who normaily contrors the pyruvate to

Lactate shift does not do so unless ordered,,

"yes but he is doing it and at a very rapid pace,, "And what is pDH doing there?,, "He is dead,,
".What?"

THE REPUBLIC I When one tries to analyse the factors that enable a country or a nation to be successful, three most obvious ones emerge. Firstly, the citizens of the country itself, how hard working and comrnitted are they to their work and have the ability to think and correctly select their leaders whom they consider could run the country best. Next comes the calibre and potentialof the leaders orthe ruling party that has been elected by a unanimous verdict or at least by a majority of the citizens vote. And lastly, and which most vital of all comes the interaction between the citizens and their elected leaders for a common cause and that is the welfare of the country. This is of course a very broad classification, if we probe deeper innumerable number of factors could emerge and would depend on ones individualconcepts and thinking as to which he would put to the fore. To achieve perfection in all these three aspects of nation building may seem quite incomprehensible in modern

times and such

proceeding from Pyruvate to citrate as the old man was dead"

"l just received reports from a highly shaken up Repressor in that area to send in a new pDH to move

a utopic state would seem to be non-existent. Yet we know of a country that exists and has achieved this not only in modern times, but has done so for centuries and will continue to do so onto eternity, the name of the country is Cell.

"This is serious chief,'

"Precisely my friend, and.,,t[ want you to
investigate"

Tracing back the history of Cell, we find that it was quite primitive in the begining but as centuries elapsed it developed and developed and its whole ultrastructure grewto gigantic proportionstilltothis day ithad become a force tr; reckon with. Who were the people who built this nation? Who were their leaders? and how they interacted to make Cellallso powerfuland pedect? This is what would,follow as we proceed. The most remarkable feature of Cell was the high levelof diversity that existed in it. The people of Cellwere
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Lipids, the Proteins and the Nucleic Acids. Severat sub-classes had emerged from these, largely Oue to intercaste marriages, rike the carbohydiateicrbsi nn"a -eiyioripi6i, with the Lipids to" toim tne iht aip,;; ;iti., Proteins to form the Lipoproteini, the prot6in" *iin 9arbohydrates to form Glycoproteins and ,o on. feople of the sub-classes follbwdd both their o"r"nt"i; faiths. several sub-classes also existed withirithe four major classes, but they differed only in their size andafi converged upon one ultimate faith.All the classes of Cell were so different in their appearence, religions and customs that one could almost wonder that how could they all work in unision towalds.one goat and that was th6 prosparity of Cell. The Carbohydrates were the workei ctads ofihe C;ii, being very simple and sturdy in built they had a very conestve nature and thus were mosily liked by all. Th6 Lipids, on the other hqld were very cieticately built bui strong and had a highly reserve nature, thdy were a secretive class that did riot mix easily with oth6r people
workino machinery of cell. The proteins were the intelligentsii of Cell, highly versatile in nature and size ariO naO probably the most diverse roles to play in Cell. They existed from midgets to giants and theii work too wai relative to their size. Finally the Nucleic Acids, they were born rulers though not as versatile as the proteins, but il *1. their ability to rule that gave them an edge over the Proteins. fs. more.personal potential than destiny would have it the Nucleic Acids that formed the Gene'party of Cell were elected unanimously to govern the country. Although the Proteins were strong contenders for tnis position at one stage, but as time elapsed they too

lqrqgty d.ivided in four classes the Carbohydrates, the

that made them play a vital role in the

of Cell, yet it was this trait of theirs as we would sde laier,

conceeded to the superiority of the Nucleic Acids and thus the fate of Cellfell into the hands of the Gene party. DNA was the head of the Gene party and he came onto become the leader of Cell. DNA had a brilliant mind and was always very precise and to the point in his statements, he never wasted any words. To a mammoth gathering that included almost the entire population of Cell and was covered on Radio and Television bv the National Network, DNA thus gave his first nationwicle address in Nucleus, the capital of Cell. "Citizens of Cell, the massive majority by which you people have elected me leader of this country shows the amount of faith that you have in me and mv party, I shalltryto the best of my ability to live upto youi expectations. There arethree main objectivesthat twisn to convey you. Firstly, nobody shall ever remain unemployed in our country, each citizen however small he nnay be would have a job to do, no job would rnean nonexistence in Cell. . Secondly I would be very fair in my distribution of work. The potential of each individual would be screened thoroughly and work would be alloted accordingly, job satisfaction would always be borne in mind.
Thirdly, and which is most important of all I wish to make you understand the concept of integration, yeS integration, I want to see you all integrated'along with me as well. We shall stand united into one single iorce, all our efforts would be collaborative for oie single cause and that is the welfare of Cell. How this wouldbe brought about is my bother, but your co-operation in achieving this is efiremely essential, as it is you citizens of Cellthat are going to be participants in this integrative system.
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.

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So the time to act has come and we begin right v" with the word 'go' for a prosperitive tom o, Thank you" This was a historic speech that DNA had made, the three pronged ideology that he had conveyeO *as to make a lastino impression in the minds of th6 peope

rovi

'codon'. Thus by ditferent permutations anO a tota[ of 64 codbns *o; ]or*eO -'-corresponding to the 22 Ms. Thus for example:combinations
TRIPLET CODON

a

basically consisted of four letters A,U,G and C, where U could also be substituted by T. Thes. r"tt"i.-*"i" arranged in groups of three, this tripret *aJieimeo as

of Cell.

DNA was supported by a very able team of leutenants, who werd other mehbers oitne eene pirty. r[e^f!reg.le1ding grolps werethe Messenger nr,rhi 6r mRNAs, the Transfer RNAs ortRNAs and thd nibosomil RNAs or rRNAs. The reasons aS to why they were so called would emerge as we discuss tnbir rcltes ln tne working machinery of Cell. While DNA was conceiving his ideas for the functioning of. Cell,-the biggest ad-vantage he intended to take was that of the veisatility of thd proteins. The

Codon sequence - AUG_AUC_GM-UGU_bGA

J-,

Msequence J,-Jr-J,
in Protein

J- J,

pre-existing Proteins and free AAs that were available in lellol imported, DNA devised a process by which robot Proteins could be made. These iobot prot6ins could be precisely controlled and served specific roles. They resembled the pre-existing proteins to such an extent that it was almost lmpossible to make out in a protein population as to which was a pre-existing one or a robot.

Proteins were mainly compo3ed of Amino Acicl lgquences (AA sequences) and these AAs being about 22or so in number, could bb arranged into innurierable number of sequences to form isingte protein. The function and identity of a protein was t6us governed bv its AA. s.equence. Thus 'with the help of- the RNAs,

A large computer was installed and it was so programmed that all DNA had to do was to just spec,fy tng.erolejl type he required and the computer woutd print out the codon sequence for it. oevising th.-"ool w3.s a very arduous task and DNA had undertaken it with.great care. Despite of number ot sieepbss ,that he.had spent over it, the ultimate resutii *er;;"ry rewarding.and the entire code became permenant. D_NA was the o_nly one who had an access to it room where the computer was placed *rJ and the neirii, guarded. tn fact security in the entii'e buirding;nJ;*" around it was thorough.

"iilt!

.

. . Al his.large lggdquarters cafled the Gene buitding inside Nucleus, DNA first devised a code, this cod6
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the lF Ribosomes. The RibosomeJ--;;; - "al"J il;;; dome-shaped structures
and tne-entiie'i"o.i"irY.i
(1 1)

Nuqeus, where the proteins were manufactured. There were ge number of factories and these il,e

,:t protein. tt was the.duty of the hRruRs-to ;r.itn; Iles:age to the sites or factories located o,itsiOe

.^^^.fgL:,? plA wished to make a particutar type of roDor protein, he would summon a mhNR to hid bmce and hand him over the codon sequence tor tnai type

complex where these Ribosomes were clustered was called the Endoplasmic Reticulum or simply ER. Once the mRNAs had delivered the message inside the factories, the Ribosomal RNAs or rRNAs took over. They fed the message into a computer that controlled an assembly line, which displayed the codons on a horizontal surJace. The job of the transfer RNAs or tRNAs was to bring the AAs to the ribosomes and place them exactly corresponding on a specific codon appearing on the assembly line for a specific A{. fs sss that this juxtaposition was correctly maintained was another job of the rRNAs. After one AA had been placed the assembly line moved ahead and space was vacant for another codon and corresponding AA, once the next had been placed on the assembly line Protein assemblors who were not robots welded the two Ms and the line moved ahead for another codon and M. Thus the prooess of codon arrival, followed by M placement and subsequent welding continued on the assembly line till the entire message on the codon sequence had boen read and the robot Protein with the corresponding AA-sequence had been formed. DNA had very cleverly devised chain terminating or "nonsense codons" that did not code for any AA and these were placed at the end of the codon sequence. The arrival of a nonsense codon marked the end of the process and the assembly stopped and a robot Protein, was ready. After coding for a Protein the codon sequence that had served its purpose, was removed from the computer and sealed in bags. These bags were sent to an area in Cell called the Sink, where these codes were destroyed.

THE REPUBLIC

There were two fundamental activities in Cell. One was the synthesis of food stuffs that required energy or power and the second was the breakdown or a utilization process that liberated energy. The careful maintenence of a balance between these two activities was of prime importance in Cell and it was largely in this activity that DNA integrated allthe Cellclasses. To carry
Proteins called the "enzymes" that brought aboutthese conversions. Mainly the Carbohydrates and to a lesser extent the Lipids, helped in the build up and break dowh with the help of enzymes.

'

II

out this activity DNA had divised a group of robot

M

The entire exercise involved the trapping of energy and its liberation in accordance to the requirments of Cell. For this to function efficiently one of the most

sophisticated type of power stations were built that were called the mitochondria. They were ten in number and almost evenly distributed all over the area of Cell. lnside the mitochondria were built a series of generators that were computer controlled and liberated a large amount of power that was more than adequate for the entire Cell population.

Located near the mitochondria, were the central grand stations or the main junctions, where all the
conversion processes in that area invariably ended, this was called the citric acid cycle or the Kreb's Cycle. As the name implies the processes at these junctions were cyclic and constantly kept feeding the generators of the mitochondria with electrons. The sub-station Citrate was the major inflow point in the cycle, in addition to this there were g other sub-stations constituting a total of 10 that made up the entire Cycle.
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(12l,

lajor duty alloted to the Carbohydrates was that of .taking part in the breakdown pro-cesses that entered the citric acid cycle. The feeder iomponent that was extensively used was glucose. The su'pply of this important substance was controlled by a bigj btirly man called Glycogen. He was a very powdrful uirion leader a bit rustic in his approach but'always delivered tlre
T-he

Allthe amino acids that formed the proteins were not available in Cell, some of them had to be imported and these were collectively called the Essential AAs (fen) or "MATTVILPHLY" each letter representing the first letter with which the M begins e.g.fid stanO-s for l/ethionine. ln addition to this the other itom that had to be imported were the Vitamins that formed an integral part of structures called co-enzymes that were most vitat 99lponents of the series of generators places in the ETC of mitochondria.

goods.

The electrons primarily liberated through the Kreb's cycle and to a lesser-extent directly frori other conversions moved through a series of generators inside the mitochondria thbt was called th6 Hectron Transport Chain or ETC. This liberated a large amount 9f .91ergy or power that was subsequentry ltilized for building up processes. The whole proiess was required to be carefully controlled and was very vast and mammothly distributed almost all over C6ll and thus required an enormous amount of man power. This complicated network was thus a majoi source of employment for the citizens of Cell. A precise controtmechariismwli essential in this complicated network. There were mainly two types of controls involved in the working system, oneS'which dirgqtly reported to DNA in the G-en6 building and ones which.operqted within the networ k. The onei reporting directly to DNA were a group of proteins catt'eO tn5 Repressors. Tlle job of the Repressors was to keep the DNA informed as to which type of robot protein was required and where, in addition to this they also conveyed a shut-off wherever needed. The secoid type of control mechanism was an automatic feed b-a'ck control existing within a single series of conversions brought about by the enzymes. Usually the last of end product of the series would move back io tothe enzyme mediating the first step and signal it to stop the proc-ess.
(r4)

economy in Cell, DNA- utilized his protein synthesizing factories for the manufacture of a group of Small roboi Proteins ealled the hormones. Horrnones had a tremendous value in the international market as they were putto specialized functions by other countries th# were unable to manufacture them. That Cell ha.: become a hormone producer was a big boon to ttre country and highly boosted its economy. The Lipids as mentioned earlier were very secretive and did not mix easily with other citizens of Cell. Thus, DNA gave them a job that not only suited their nature but was to probably play a most vital role in the history of Cell. The Lipids formed the lnternal Security Department known as the ISD of Cell. Almost the entire ISD was composed of Lipid members who in collaboration with robot Proteins called the structurals and the cross-breeds the Lipoproteins formed the security network within as well on the borders of Cell.
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Thus the import of Cell was largely centered around the EAAs and the Vitamins. ln order to counterbalance this import and maintain a stable

lnspector Steroid was the chief of lSD, he was a man of strength, extreme intelligence and astute judgement and stood out very prominently among the Lipid class. Prominently, because he had the typical steroidal features that he had inherited from his family tree the Steroids. The most vital points where you would invariably find ISD personnel was the borders of Cell, all roads leading to and away from Nucleus, the boundries of Nucleus, in and around the Gene building, the industrial complex ER and around the power stations- the mitochondria. Security was strictest in these areas and the way in which the Lipids handled their job was remarkable . Their checks were always thorough and rarely anybody without proper papers or identification was allowed through the check posts. Regardless of the fact that whether the proteins were the pre-existing ones or the robots the main types we have come across so far are-the assemblors in the factories, the enzymes that.promoted conversions, the specialized hormones that were of export value and the structurals integrated with the Lipids in the lSD. Lastly we come to one more specialized class called the immunoglobins. The immunoglobins formed one of the most formidable defences of Cell. These Proteins were highly trained in all form of warfare right from man to man combat to the commandos. The lmmunoglobins were led by a very tough veteren of many wars and a total discliplinarian and soldier to the core general lgG. The defence forces were completely under the command of general lgG and they never mixed with the
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lSD. Their job was to solely counteract foreign interference and even taketo war if necessary. Although ISD personnel were placed on the borders, but they only maintained a constant vigil and checked the in and outflow of traffic. When it came to aggression, the lmmunoglobins took over, fought the enemies and destroyed them. The Gene building in Nucleus, the capital of Cell was the controlcentre of allactivities. lt was divided into five main units.
The ISD and control room where the repressors reported were at the base.

The defence division and the foreign exchange
I

department were next.

Then came the code room, where the main computer programmed to deliver codon sequences was installed, adjacent to it was a catolog room and reference library, where files containing a detailed record of each person working in Cell was kept.
The research and analysis department, scanning section and RNA offices followed.
On top of allwas the meeting room and the office of DNA. Thus summing up, DNA had justified his proclamation on coming to power. Every citizen of Cell had a job to do which was in accordance to his potential

and liking. Above all, the concept of integration had precipitated automatically in the whole working system
of Cell.
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INVESTIGATING THE TROUBLE After reaving_DNA in the research and anarvsis division inspector-steroid oescenolo io*riil of the Gene buitding. He was ,atn.iOirirGJ;;;, the major reason " Qling rris inioitity to d;aw lnv iir.t hand concrusions aboulthe snJt oown power at one. He went into the contror room at the base station and out in two cals to summon nis twooepriili. .:r.6-ililcTor. Parmitate and sub-inspector Lecithin. His oioeiJ;;;, brief "Report at once at the take ott point grrcoie oiihe glycolytic pathway at power station one.,, . -Although many conversion pathways entered the Kreb's cycle, th6 g[colyticpdinway, contributedinto by the.carbohydrates was a major entrant into it. rt started at-the glucose point, which was nence called the take off point and thereaft., go*rnrJ oy-a series ot.nivri". involving solne ten ste;ps tn"t ,ttirrtely ended-ip sub-station pyruvate. Now hereonwardsihere "t options, the "full ,,snut-oft .capacity option,; and the option"or the "forbidben 6ptibn." Both tne iteps *eie controlled by two giant robot enzymes called FOn to, the full.gaqryjlv opiion and LDH f6r the toiOiOoen onL

All the pathways and the cycle were tubular
structures almost resembling atunnel, each sub-station chamber where the conversion products would accumulate. The chambers appeared like bulbous structures on the tubular pathway. The whole conversion network looked like beads placed wide apart on a string. The robot enzymes functioned between the chambers and brought about the conversions. Circuits carrying the electrons to the mitochondrial generators existed on the tubular structures. The robot enzymes either passed electrons to the circuit or withdrew them from the circuit

rt.ilr"

within the pathway was

a

.

depending upon the nature of the conversion i.e. whether it was a breakdown or a buildup one,
respectively. Within the tubular structures and encircling

the chambers were continuous passages called the

*.rri*o

'manning routes' through which security personnel and other visitors could move around the entire network.

and the- compleiion- of orie t<re6d electrons liberated in the process wourd oe reolntJne mitochondriar generators that wourd producJg6';;li; oT energy or power. Under the shut off conditions LDH would act and convert pyruvate to Lactate thus rendering the Krebs. cycle n6n+unctionar anJbnd'O; unitsof power would b-e available from the electro,is ot the glycolytic pathway only.
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cycle wourd be initiated. rn the whore exercise, starting from take off point gtucose gging tnrorgn tii" tirv.?iry,il -ddi; pathway

Normally pDH wourd bring about tne conversion'Jr Pyruvate to citrate via an i-ntermeoiate ,no in" riiro-,

The inspectors and his two deputies a:'rived in quick succession at the take off point glucose of power station one. As they approached the entrance, the inspector briefed his deputies about the recent happenings.
The first thing the three of them noticed was the large number of trucks standing outside the entrance and Glycogen was supervising the unloading of glucose cartons that were being carried inside. "Move faster you lazy oafs, we still have many truckloads to empty" he bawled at the workers. The inspector approached him... "Why dlthis rush Glyco?" "Ah! there you are I ask you the same" "Since when have you been at it?"asked Lecithin.
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"All night, while you fellas were enjoying your sleep, lwas sweating it out here, man l'd love a nap."
"Serious trouble inside there, we have come to investigate" said Palmitate. "Bah investigate! that's all you ISD blokes do, no physical labour like us Carbos, well buddies I hope you've had your share of lotuses" "Cut the comedy Glyco" snapped the inspector "wish to join us in?" "Nah, go ahead and do your.iob" He went back to supervising his workers, whilethe investigative trio entered take off point glucose and started moving along the manning route. 'The nerve of him to call us lotus eaters"said Lecithin gravely. ''lgnore him and now hereonwards both of you keep an eye on anything unusual you see, we have a long way to go" During their entire journey from the take off point to sub-station Pyruvate, the only noticeable feature they observed was the abnormal speed of the glycolytic
pathway.

''Well what goes on? and Captain I want the complete photo" The captain began his story...
"When we arrived here, we noticed the movement

of the path towards the forbidden option. At first we thought it was one of the routine shut off orders operating, but then we noticed that the guards in this area were missing, they seemed to have completely vanished, it puzzled us, but very soon the cause
became evident. lf you will observe closely there seems to be a sort of mist or fog on the entrance of Lactate. One of our men who attempted to enter, completely melted or rather dissolved in the mist and another one of them who went to rescue him lies here..."

lnside sub-station Pyruvate there was a bifurcation, one leading to Lactate and the other to

Citrate. There was a hushed up silence inside as allthe security guards stood aggregated neartne Citrate entrance. ihey were talking in low whrspers to each other. lhspector Steroid and his two deputies approached the group, the captain .of the group confroted him with a perplexed look on his face
(20)

The group moved and formed a circle around a stretcher on which lay a guard covered with a sheet. The captain slowly removed the sheet and what they saw stunned them. He was a Lipoprotein guard, some portions of his body were missing completely and some looked like they had been eaten away by acid, he was very much dead. ''More Captain?" "Still more Sir, please follow me" They all moved inside the tunnel leading to Citrate, there on the manning route lay another stretcher which too was covered by a sheet. "Who is that?"' "lt is PDH Sir and I am afraid a very gruesome sight to watch" "Go ahead and uncover him"

What they saw made everybodies heart stop momentarily. The inspector and his deputies were quite
(21)

hard men and.seen a lot of violence in their lives, but this was so meth in g tnri'o-rri' Ihl. roor,iJ' .J'ti?u gn pDH had been oipipJ in l-t;rf',lr.r, acid and taken out. His body was corhirt.glrty and the process was 'still rjnl f;aii.and eated away and tiquid exuding out of tne OoOV ii"'Itlroy pace. wa6 stil Quickty ,. .__ _ !hl. ipp,".Jor. srirro and turned around towaros ni. and said ,'Now , *",nl!r9e things to b€ done immediately, firstty you patmis?,.?ry ;io"p drv*gen at once from feeding any more glucose ai tnitat e off point, Leci I hope you have brolght voriiii'6rgz,, "yes Sir,, "Good, Use your suction OoT!g., on two things, want the sampte_of tnis r(uroiffin,, body. you riustI nave observed some or that-rioli"o' ti suard, tnai ai we,. Seai Iffi',"^,:,fl sent to the analyslg .oqnirtril. A;ptiiri;I.# ;Jtll, men to herp Sr Lecithin ih tre [io.".r and genilemen, be cautious of anything ydilniir, ,. you have seen that the stuff is qnaffrie inTiiiii"g captain, make arrangements for both these oooi* to be sent to the analysis department.,,

;d;;il

j.p;il,il;o"sure

"C to D, C to D', "D to C, I hear you well, go on..,' The inspector gave him a complete account of the events that had occured and finariy he presenteo an outline of a plan that he had divisea'to captui" fOi."Do you approve of it chief?,' . "Irr, good and meanwhile I shall begin my analysis as soon as the sampres and the boo-iJilrrive, I am..sending your requirements right away, gtLJ Sterl" "Thank you chief.,'

irti

lXlr;il*Ill ;iruHtfiJl;

wasjlear to the inspector and that was, ^._^ ^9_nglhing rnar rne onty way LDH could be approached would be from the both ends, i.e. the entr'ance as well as the Lactate exit. So he moved out of the glycolytic pJinwav an.d came to the take otf point grucos-e. nri.iri-.i. a heated argument going on -between OfVLog;; Palmitate.

*"i ;;;

"r put in ail my efforts to bring these truckroads of glucose and this fella tells me to laly off!,,

.

a contact with DNA.

the and confirmino itj.cfosure, n-.'il,rrned Krebs cycle back to SS Pyruvate, wher; he took ori nii trinsmitter and made
(22)

,constanfly approach LDH, he was very r<ei,n io at at him. After making a qui6f srrvey'of

the inspector was

"Right away Sir',and the captain got busy ordering nts men, while Sl pa.lmitat" *"Jin nts way towards the take off point and st r"ciinini^irl'opening his kit bag. Ever since he had entered sub.-station pyruvate,

"You will do as he.says, these are orders, you would have understood had you come arong *iir-i ui inside, so do as you are told.'i . Glycogen turned away mumbling curses and stopped the untoading of gtuiose into thdtake;ff d;t. "come palmi lets make a short trip" Both sat in the inspectors car and began to drive out Palmitate took to the wheet. "Where to?"
(23l.

thinx,ng

to re;.ilr;;?i;i

of wavs

connection" After a short drive along the outside road of the glycolytic pathway, they ca-me to a halt ne", in" connection, on their journey the rnspector toio . Palmitate about his plan. probability,' said . '.ln all there, now that the inspector ,,LDH is alone inside he wourd have no *oik to do as we have stopped the feeding, he witt t<now that we know, so he wiil either move orJi or wage a oattie. He won't go inside, but may try to come out of the exit and morever his supply ot inai lethal stuff is noi goinb to last forever." "The suction process should exhaust it earlier,,
"Yes and I have called the commandos who would cover both the ends." They got out of the car, and came th? big tubular structure joiningand stood near the bulbous sub-stations. "You wait here palmiand call me when the parlies arrive" The inspector moved towards the bulbous Lactate exit and began examining its outer side, from wneie usually Lactate was eliminated. There was something on the ground around the exit thet drew his attention] he bent down and looked at it curiously. Just then Palmitate came running around ,,Sir, our friends seemed to have arrived.,'

"To the outside of SS

pyruvate-Lactate

A sergeant and a foreman, who were obvious
heads of the two units, got down and approached the inspector. "Welcome friends, first tho maintenence job"he addressed the foreman ."1 want you to put in an evacuatisn oBeration, an exhaust operation to be exact. There ar6 several outlet points on that, you know them" ha said pointing towards the tubular structure connecting the two sub-stations "fix your hoses onto them in such a manner that they are evenly distributed and connect them to a vaccum pump. Collect the exhaust in steel cylinders, taking care that there are no lcaks. Go ahead and begin the assembly and wait for my signalto begin exhaust." The foreman left and began his work, while the inspector then addressed the sergeant. "Well sarge, I want you to split up your unit into two. The first group, that you will lead goes inside the glycolytic pathway and waits outside the Lactate entrance, keep a distance mind you and transmit me your arrival immediately. The second group should be ready at thc Lactate exit out here. Both groups will charge in at my signal and sargo instruct your men not to kill. lwant our adversary alive and also approach with caution. I hope your men are all geared up for this?" "We are prepared Sir"
"Right then, Move" The sergeant ran briskly towards his men, while the foreman returned to the inspector. "We are all set sir, say when"

.

.

both greeted the arrival of the two trucks, one -They was from the defence department of cell and the other from the maintenence unit.
(24')

"Be ready and keep the exhaust capacity to full"
(25)

. fn." Iirst group of commandos drove away in their truck while the second took its position outiide the
Lactate exit.

lnspector went towards the second group and toldthem to fix their detonators, as they woutd-navb to blast in and then he eagerly awaited thdarrivalof the transrnit from group one. Minutes rolled by as the inspectorwaited, justthen he heard the'beep-beep'of his transmittel he 6witched it on

. tr.

The whole attack on LDH had been executed with such precise timing that it came quite suddenly on him. He could see that he was being charged in from both ends, he keJlt his spray gun on, it was emitting a foggy

substance
Brrt rl wir:; of no avail as the exhaust pumps

v't )

"We are here Sir" spoke the sergeant "The mist is still there?" "Yes" "Hold on"
He turned towards the forenran who was standing behind hirn "Begin exhaust" Gra:iually the whole atmosphere vibrated in the noise of the vacuum pumps. The inspector allowed a few minutes to elapse and then contacted the sergeant again "Any change?" "The mist is disapparing, well its almost gone and the entrance looks clear" "Then approach with caution and charge in" "Right Sir" "Come Palmi lets move, keep the exhausts on while we we charge in" Both took out their guns and joined group iwo at the exit "Ok Boys blast the exit open" A loud explosion followed and while the smoke

oon:,iriuttly drirrleyirrt; it away out of the chamber. Just tlrt;n hu rotittut I ;r rlt;rl ort the gun that was now no longer ernrttrnr; tlrl lot;, Irtrl rt lormed a spray of liquid. He kept :iwrr{lrrrlllr(! (lr,rr from end to end, as he knew itwas Irr:; l;r:,t rcsort and that was the only thing that could kuu;r ltr:; attackers at bay, But the spray gradually slowed down and stop;:ed with a'phut.' He shook the cylinder attached to the gun vigorously but nothing happened, his stock had exhausted and he knew he

was licked. "surrender LDH, you have done your lot" shouted

llto ln:;poctor'.
llLrt tIrtrrr, tto clrd the inevitatrle ancnhe iISpecl,lr had Iorrll lc;rrntlrl irtttl hts last hopes of taking LDH alive had

(fonlr ;rs tlrcy irll observed him swallow and collapse
irlrrro:;l rrrst;rrrtarteously on the floor.

from the explosion was still dying away,
(26)

the

commandos, the inspector and his deputy entered SS Lactate.

capsule" He muttered irr despair and then shouted an order to all the men "Do not approach him at once as the liquid is still around, cover up the floor with steel planks and and have his body sent to the analysis department and men do not forget his weapon, that goes along as well."
rt, he has taken the
(27],

"l)ilrnn

motive. Next come the criminals who indulge in organized crime for a personal benefit, a majoiity ot them fallin this category. The act may involve a 6ig O'ant< robbery, lpetty theft, murdeq swindling, smuggliig and what not. The act may be committed by a lone6p#ator or in.groups, but the indulgent is in nb way insane, in fact they have brilliant minds and the whol6 job is well planned or organized. Lastly comes the catejory of the fanatics, their involvement in crime is pur6ty'for an ideology or belief or even religion. When'such matters are- dragged into a criminal act matters become very delicate. Even a law abiding citized is unable t6 comprehend ag to which is more important the ideology or the crime.
The effect can be very devastating if all these three categories are blended in to one single personality, AND was one such character. During the early stages of Cell, when the Nucleic acids lead by DNA were forming the Gene party, AND
(28)

ANTITHESIS The study of criminal behaviour is a very cornplex issue. For centuries, psychorogists and scieritists liave m3dg attempts to analyse criminal minds. Not only minds, but even attempts have been made to look for biochemical differences, the theory of the extra y chromosome is a result of this. Looking through all the studies we find that criminal behaviourLan be-grouped broadly into three cate-gories. First are the psyiopitns or people who are suffering from a totally wrect<6d up psyche; this state may be permenant or intermittent. depending upon the d-egred or nature of the Aisor&;. The trouble with such people is a highly physiological one, related to their nervous system, iG d Oisdase. Such people mostly indulge in violence or assault without a

.

was a member of the group. But he had always been a menace to the party, all his ideas were very much converse to those put forth by DNA in his manifesto. AND had always made attempts to break up the party and form his own group, the only trouble was that he lacRed B substantral support from the other members. Not only the Nucleic Acids but oven other classes of Cell datagtad hls very presonce. A stage had come when he became an ostracisized member, totally isolated and ahunnad by all. His being alone also made him a target for rldleula and lt w6s this approach of the other people of csllthat sowed tho seeds of wrath in his mind. Despite of all his defects, AND was bestowed with a brilliant mind and lt was probably only DNA who understood this and always prevented others from mocking at him. "We should try and make him like us, he is one of . us so we should reason with him" "Reason? dammit DNA, you very well know that fanaticism never conforms to reason and AND is a 3-D fanatic" argued the RNAs.

By 3-D they meant Disintegrate, Destroy and Dlvtdc and that is what AND used to always propose, tre wanted the Gone party to rule like tyrants. "But lf we at least try he can be put to excellent ugeg ln eell" "lt is futile DNA, all that he deserves is a padded loek up or exile forever, his ideas are harmful and the 3-D concept will someday wreck us all"
Had DNA at that stage heeded to the words of other members of the Gene party, the catastrophe that followed in Cell would have never occured. But DNA was a very open hearted and considerate man, he always believed in giving a fair chance to everybody.
(2s)

Ultimately the day arrived when duties to all the members of cell had to be ailotted and finalry the most dreaded question arose as to what was to be done of AND? What work should be given to him? After a heated debate in the party it was decided that AND would be in charge of the Sink. The Sink was an area in Cell quite far away from Nucleus and was the junkyard of cell. Allthe junk from Cell may it be outdated non-functional robots or used up codori sequences or unwanted material of any sort, would be dumped in the sink. lt was like a giant garbage can and AND was made the head of this unit, his duty was to see to it that all the waste was destroyed and if any useful materials could be still isolated, sent back to other parts of Cr- i for re-utilization. All the members of the pirty thought that this job would suit him, as he could give vent to-his lust for destruction in the process. But this decision that was reached unanimously only glrve more fuelto the fire of hatred already in AND's head, he took it as a rebuke and f'elt highl! humiliated.

very deep down. At the base of the valley was built the disposal unit. Truckloads ofdiscardedmaterial would arrive here and then a process of manual classification would begin. The entire 'trash'would be sorted out and depending upon the nature of the material it would be fed into specialized chambers that contained all the requirements to destroy a particular type of substance. The destruction was always total leaving no debris at all. The disposal r-rnit consisted of a big hall where the sorting out used to be done and from the hall several outlets containing conveyor belts led to the destruction charnbers. Attached to the hallwas a smalloffice where AND used to sit. The people who worked in sink came from alnrost all classes of cell and they too, were mostly the discards or criminals who were serving a sentence. They mostly did the work of sorting out and feeding the chambers with the trash. These workers were never kept like conventional prisoners they formed a small settlement in the valley near the disposal unit, and AND lived with them. It was hera in Sink that AND built his empire. The gestatlon perriod involved in the building up process was n v6r.y lnng orre. Ihe first thing AND realized, to be done, wns to gain n totnlfnith of the people working under him and in thls began s proeess of gradual indoctrination. At flrst ll were only small groups that he would address rn tho settlement but gradually these groups grew larger and a day had arrived when everybody dwelling in sink began to look upon AND as their almiEhty master.'The essence of his ideology had been the 3-D concept, the first two Ds i.e. Disintegrate and Destroy would be used to achieve the third D i"e. Divide. This he said would give birth to a new nation that would be called 'Neoplasia' and the party that would govern the country would be
(31)

il;;g

"The baggars" was allthat he said and then fell silent. He never uttered a word thereafter and once he had moved to his premises the people of Cell saw less of him. 'obliterated in the litter' was allthat they thought of him.

towards AND and the total silence that AND-had
forgoften entity in Cell. The Sink was a very large area in Cell, it was actually a big depression or a gigantic valley that went
(30)

DNA had never liked the approach of his collegues

as the years rolled by AND had almost become

observed on his departure worried him allthe more. But
a

called the Oncoggne pqrty.. Once the the peopre working uhoei nim nlo absolute faith of AND began him. preparations. Be'iowbeen estabtished, the disposar unit an underground'areb,was oug;;t which consisted of several rooms jo-ined ov tunierJ. All discarded bv cbrr was riot d"iii6veo, ihe-;irji-U":ng out iitei ;;;;g throush the destruglion ;i'#io*, where AND set up his taOoritori'-

.ri*'i,il i#;A

mitochondrion. Moreover he nao iiio "rdTgBS'3i,:,:'?ll not getting a complete. glycolytic pitn*ay succeeded in functional. For this reason he'decid"e6 thii; [r,pl=q of the pathway yvag the only alternative, insteiO -he rntended Lactate as a feeder. From f,iitrp.riments to use discovered that LDH was Orul.enzyme, he had it could convert pyruvateto Lactate and vice-versi. " so if Lacdi; get converted to nyruvaG-using iori 99u.ld fr; Krebs cycte coutd be stiit iil;ithodi tn" gty."ryti. Pllly"y Atthough the units ol nowl, woutd not be 36, bu-t they wourd'nt be ress that 30 eithlr, which wourd stiil sutfice for Neoplasia to thrive.

fl{t_enging o.ne and it was OV nis sheer rngenuity and skill that he succeeded. briliance, nu . concentrated on the eodon sequences r.norify and the discraded robot proteins thii rr"O to arrive, Bit by bit, at times frustrating at timei ,"*rrii"6,',ffi "o!ir#, painstaking but a1ter..99veqif yeais of work AND had cracked the code buitt be or.rA. H. nri'*iii.il;;1, that gave him a ctear cut' ioea'ot tne -reiaiionlilip between the codon.sequences and tn" aa_rrqil"im of the.proteins. fignl fieb* inere deep down in Sink from the discards-of Cell, nf.fO-"rurted a replica of Cell. tt was dfmosi as thoughminiature he had established celr within cerr. eui in ail ffre F..u1.'tL llcked only one thing anOinat *as r ot siucls;,l; 69 Jeo in his

The task that AND had undertaken

was

This Lactate AND intended to pilfer from Cell. Lactate did arrive in the Sink but it was in very minute quantities. He needed more amounts, not oniy to run his power station but to also have a substantih stock for the near future. He felt delighted at the whole idea as it would serve a dualpurpose. ln addition to its being put to usc in Neoplasia, the Lactate suck from Ce'ii would render its Krebs cycle non-funtional, thus
wcakenlng its power resources. The tankers carrying the first consignment of the pllfered Lactata from Cell was me[ with great anthusiasm in thc Sink. AND approached tnJfirst

tanker, "Well done boys and get the stuff below fast, but where is that blasted LDH?" "Well I am afraid master that he could'nt make it" said the driver, who was once a Lipid guard.

"why?"
"The drivel of the last tanker that was loaded said thal he wanted one more refil to be sent and then he would quit and come along with that tanker." "The fool, he should have come with you as planned, I hope those Cell guys dont take hirir alive, anyway we are not going to send any more refils forthe time being." "But what about the LDH over there?,,

iffi

"Let him pay the price for disobedience" "They would kill him!" "Come man freedom cannot be achieved without sacrifices, this is only our first move we still have a long way to go."
(33)

(32)

ANALYSING THE TROUBLE

It did not take DNA very long to complete his analysis of the samples and bodles received from power station one. The highly equipped laboratory in the research and analysis division made things eaSier for him. The results of the analysis however,-not only worried him but startled him as well. He felt that t6 assess the whole situation a meeting of all the Cell heads was necessary. It was on top of the Gene building in the meeting room, which resembled a miniature auditorium, thJt they all assembled. The group consisted of the RNAs, general lgG, lnspector Steroid and Glycogen. All the members of the group found Glycogen;s humour quite
undigestable, yet they got on with it and by now had got used to it. He started right away. "These RNAs remind me of dumb cows', inspector.

the atmosphere, he too curbed himself with a tremendous effort and settled down in his customary chair.

Again nobody laughed and sensing

"Do you know why we are here?,' asked the

At that moment DNA entered the room, they all stood up in respect he waved his hand as he moved towards the dias on the stage. "Sit down friends" Once everybody had settled, DNA began.. ' Wcll gclttkrrrron by now you must be aware of the Ital)lrerrrngg at power station one. The reason for my calllng you all ts, so that you understand the serloucness of the sitution and to devise counter mea5uf6s by common agreement amongst us. I begin wlth reports I have on the two bodies and the cause of their death. lf you all will observe, there are three aspects of these deaths. First, the lipid guard dissolved competely in the foggy substance. TWo the Lipoprotein guard partly dissolved and was partly eaten away and thirdly PDH was almost completely eaten away by the
substance. The reason for this pattern will be clear once we look into the chemical nature of the substance. Our analysis shows that it consist of three organic solvents, chloroform, ether and ethyl alcohol and another component called a protease. The substance was stored originally in liquid form in a cylinder which was attached to a spray gun. The entire molecular status of the substance can be controlled by rotating a dial on the spray gun. Thus the gun can eigher emit the liquid in its original state or in a more activated or vapourized state. The liquid state is usefulfor a direct hit on say one or two targets and the vapourized state renders the whole atmospherefoggy, thus covering a larger surface

"Oh yes, you seem to have found a bomb down there, I hope you sit on it when it goes -bang,'said
Glycogen.

Nobody laughed, he continued "Well, well, look at our general, he looks like a pregnant sow, its high time you did something about that" and pointed towards the general's belly.

"Come Glyco, . poking atnow, said thebe serious for a change and quit us" general.
into a fit of laughter.

"Hah[ pokingl that's a good word" and he burst
(34)

area. The effect of the substance in either state
unaltered."
(35)

is

has made this substance, knew that lipids completely dissolve in organic solvents and Proteins are split apart by proteases. That also explains the Lipoproteins condition, his tifilo portions were missing as they were completely dissolved in the organic solvents and his protein portions got eaten away by the prdtease."

.

_-__ must say it is an ingenious weapon,, said the "lndeed lgG, and the creator a mastermind, for whoever
'1.

"But why should our LDH indulge in the crime? he is always under your control chief" said another
RNA.

"All our LDHs functioning at all power stations are under my control, but this one was not our LDH" DNA
reptied.

"But wont the organic solvents inactivate the protease?" asked one oithe RNAs. "No, becaupe. i1 the original liquid the protease is in an immobirized state or rrtfiri it ir encapsurated and thus th,e organic sotvents oo not ettect ii;b;t;;;;.I i, onty when the capsute touchei th; it ruptures and bdgins its lethiietfect,, "But who should do it? and why?,, spoke the general

"How come?" asked the general. "Werll I and Ster studied all the LDH files before eomrrlg hore, their record is impeccable. All of them
rusrrally consist of four sulr-units, which are of two types

tFi;t", IJilili

]{ iurtl M llrus, ttrere are five types of LDHs that can be trrntltl" l)NA rrrovocj towards the blackboard behind him

itnrlwrote. .. LDH type
I

Sub-unit compositiol

HHHI.,

I would like my friend Ster to say ' something"
"Obviouslv whoever has indulged in the act was after only q1e tfiing and that is t_ictic acid or Lactate as we r.nay cail it. r observed tyre marks ortin[ers the Lactate exit and it rooi<eo al inougn not one but many tanker loads seemed to have bden there.."

"Here

2 3 4 5

HHHM HHMM HMMM MMMM

"riiiii tak;;lr;;

spoke for the first time rin.. the discusrion, had started "lt is not useless for our party in concern here, for he who could devise such a'tantastii w;;pr; *d;i; also have the ingenuity to pri lr.trte to whatever be his "yseq,'ne witi O.inrt"ty use. But crippte our power resources if hedoes it repeatedty ano tniils wnai makes this a serious issue,'.
(36)

_ "Bah! who would need that useless stuff,, pty9o.ge1

"They all look identical and can never be rltffcrnnlrrtod outwardly, they also function similarly. ln urrr :iyslerrr trere we have always used the type 2, but irller :itrrtiyrrrg.l the body of the dead LDIi that we roeorvctl, wr+ found that the M subunit was missing and re;rlaced by an H sub-unit, so he was type 1". "But what happened to our LDH at power station one?" again it was the general. "When the attack on the station occured, no LDH was on duty over there as the station was functioning to full capacity. Normally we only send in an LDH when a shut off is required" . "Any counter measures against that stuff?" said an RNA.
(37)

"For the organic solvents we cannot do much except to use polyethene or teflon suits i.e. ,.niuu. u -pioi.use physicar shierd. But for tnr we have an antagonist and these substanies are cailed pioGu* inhibitors. Thus if a.person nimseit v,[tn inhibitors, the oossibility of.the piot.as, eating tn.rgn him is less or almost hririii.ol untess or course, the "io protease

"First of all Glyco, you would have to be very tilscr'cet irt yottr distribution of glucose at all power
,;lirlron:; Knnp yurrr supplies ample but be very cautious whrlo llrn 1lhrt:osc is being fed. Secondly, general we wur rlr I ltkn yt ltr ttre help us in some internal work as well. l wnnl you lo prut in extra commando and other units at nrrr:lr :;l;rtion, as you would form the first line of defence. I wrll rnake the protease inhibitors available, that your rrrnrr woulclutilize to embalm themselves. You, Ster keep ynut l:il) rnr)n on the second line after the uninurrot;krtrrns. ln fact all three of you, Glyco, the unnrlroi;lobins and ISD members have to work in cu ordrnation, without which it would be quite difficult to refute any furthers attacks from AND. Although I would rnaintain a constant vigil on each station on our display trnit, but if ihe screens blacken out as they did earlier I woulrl'nt know what is going on. Of course it would only ir!rlir:nln ir lroutlle shooting, but l'll put in more rtrlrtriieurf; ovnrywtrrlre to keep me informed, any r 1t te=lloIr:r'l" "Wlrirl rkr wo llNAs do?" one of the RNAs asked
llra lrrrre lrerng I do not think you would have rnrrr:lr to clo except to keep our factories running as Lrsu;rl. Because, our work at present mostly involves these three" DNA said pointing towards Glycogen, general lgG and inspector Steroid, "So, gentlemen we shall all be on our toes and keep our fingers crossed"
r

"rOit*
'

i;;;"

this time. "We are coming to that my friend,, " said DNA,, I wish Ster that you takL over', ".ln all probablity I can only assume that AND is ,. behind this.. " "AND!" said many in unision "Yes, all the pointers are towards him and the Lactic acid removai confirms our doubts. w" cnecr."i all over cell and found that nowhere-have theilir;ri;;; beel seen, nor have they been transported out of Cell so the only obvious plac-e they have gone is thesin[. The only thing that we are quite unabTe to unoeistano is his motive oinino .r is pirelafl.t'*.rken our power Jor w_lrat?- i personaily feet tn'iitnis l::yi::_=lye?,.but rs onty tne.begining, he will strike again an6 use this ploy to pur forth his demands....,, "Dernands! to blackmarl.' us for them? what godammened demands can he have?,, inteaecieO'if[general "Whatever they are but I am afraid they would,nt be far off. At present we can only prepare ourselves and wait for him to make the next move. As to what has to be done now our chief would tell us,'

"But who the hell has done all this?,, it was Glycogen

overcome the inhibitor,s effect,'

dose

is

substantiallv targe

.norli

'

,

.

"l

rr

The meeting was adjourned.
(38) (3e)

ORDERED CHAOS, EVIL DESIGNS

.

members made ev_ery attempt to defy the invader=, task was. quite difficurt. The greatest probrems aioi. yhg! multiple attacks were taunched, by tne time tney had just managed to save one station, a Lactate sucft would begin at another and another. Matters became more complicated as the Oncogeno members were none otherthan defectors from the cell population itself, thus it was very difficurt for the security personner to make out as to who was who. Even if thby did manage to detect their enemies, the outcome *ou[d be a viore"nt fight between both the parties. In allthe confrontations that took place it was invariably the Oncogen" qrorp that-had an upper hand, for they too were Is bfiiteO ih warfare as the immunoglobins-or the ISD members. Above allthey possessed that lethalweapon which was coupled by excellent training that AND h'ad imparted to thern, specially suited for terrorist activities ahd mass sabotage. The counter measures adopted by the Cell soldiers worked to a very meagre extent, Firstly the suits worn by the ISD members were very cumbersome and this highly slowed down their movements as there was
1+o)

Although both the immilnoglobins and the

Whatfollowed hereafterwas aseries of moves and counter moves by both the sides. one thing er.ro n'ao realized and that was that, celr at any cos[ could not shut off all its power stations as that w5uld be suiiidai So this gave him an ample number of choices as to where and when to attack. The strategy that he had qlopted was very clear, pilfer Lactaill- at any cost.
ISO

vory lrttle :ipitco for body movement. The protease hrltllrllnr!i u:ic(l lry ttro imrnunoglobins a,lsOhad their llrrrllaltur rli, l)n(:,ru!i(l rr cnsos of prolonged exposure to llr' prrln;r:,*, il w;rs the prote:rse which ultimately,won
rtrttl Itc(lirtr ilr; lethal effeet.

G

becom_e quite weary in the whorebperatiori. Forthe time being Cell had severed all its links with the Sink and a make shift disposal unit had been built. This unit too was quite active, as come what may there is no e"O io r;arbage.

(ilycogen was one porson who suffered most in Itri:; perrod, he would be seon running from station to st.tion supplying glucose at some and hording it back at others. To comply the repeated orders of feed and hold back over an area of ten stations was a horrendous task. lnspector steroic and his two deputies sl Lecithin and Sl Palmitate along with generil lgG had also

lre rcpeated attacks by the Oncogene group had I rli::rurlr.tt rrr' whore power supply of c6n. rnTs suiooen urrfur-qotlr r:n!irl:; lnarle DNA an extremely worried man. Mecrrr wlrrr* rrr the sink the activity was hectic..The kiluo urrrourrl ol I ;rr:lale thst had been stoleh from cell wrr:i lroirr1; :;rorcrl cruefully. At this time AND called for a rrrflcllrrl; irt llrG rrnderground headquarters of the ( )rr.r1;,rr* yrHrty I he participants inclu'ded a varietv oi rl'l,cr.r:; lr,rn cell, including some discards wirotwere

"Our boys have done well" said AND,,,but before we put forward our demand I want'two thingrs to b6 done, you said thatthere were some more peopre readv do defect?" he asked one ex-commando.'- - -r'"Yes, two of them are Lipid guards in the Gene building and one of them a RepresSor,'
(41)

.

would have very im$ortant jobs to oo. rnrliist 3q thing that I want to be cione is this..".,, He took out a. sheet of paper and placed it on a .table pefole him, others crcwbeb arouncj the table;nd stared at the paper. "This is a birds eye-view of the Gene building and the entire area arounci it. Rre both the grarOs ;;duiy at the check post on the main gate?,, '. No, one of them is posted inside the building and the other one is i1 tg-ct a captain at the *uin bri the duties keep shuffling', "l hope you can arrange it through the captain to have the other guard to be r]nder himlor some'timez; "Yes it can be done', "Good, than this is what they will have to do.....,, He told them..After they alt had heard thd plan the ex-commando spoke. "But master it is a very risky operation, can both of them m.anage or should we renObr sor*'n"lp tro, our side?"

. "Tellthem to hord their positions forthe time being they

He opened the drawer of the table and extracted a small metallic device and placed it on the table.

"What is that?" "Cell's epitaph" "What?"

"As I said Cell's epitaph, I cell it the M-alternative
initiator. The dovice shall be only put to use in case they do not concede to our demand, lwant itto be implanteil rnto the main computer and that is where the Repressor cornes into the plan, rts his job to do it"

..

dd

"lIrt wlrlrr wrll he do it? the computer room is so Irnnvtly grrrutkrd" "l eiolsl, cant you see the obvious? while the two
guurds are doing their job, the Repressor does his. lt has to be well timed, as when the guards would have finished our target, it would create quite a commotion. It is during this shofi period that the Represeor would gal arr oppurtunity to slip into the computer room and Inr;rlant lhe device at B point which I would specify"

All tlre defectors and discards including the
Ex.co,Rntando looked at AND in sheer disbelief and adrnlratiorr. He acJdressed the ex-commando again.

oone,

and . "They should the they will, moreover thev are 'i.:O above.suspic.ion for

I

time-being and once tne ii is done, then I do not think the Cell guyi can

"But why tl-iis particular target?;' "Because he is an imponant Cellhead, the impact would be trernendous and the ingredi;hi, oi-rv weapon make him most suited for the purpose, I hav6 specially designed it for him, The secon'O tfiing i;rnt io be done is....."
(42l.

''lt is your Job to brief these three men on the entire operation. Iake this device and the weapon along with you and also don't forget to tell them that there is no place in Neoplasia for persens who have failed. Let the pilfer of Lactate continue for: the time being, any questions?"
There were none.
(43)

ASSASINATION General lgC was q very punctual man, his daily moVements withrn the Gene building and around Ceil were like ctockwork. People working around the area adjusted their watches 6n seeing -him. Ever; since trouble had started in Cell, the general had never gl?.nged his routine, nor did he evJr use the protease inhibitor to embalm himself. lt was somehow alainst his principles, he always thought that if ever the situation arose he would fight it out rather that depend on a protective agent like the inhibitor. Al the main gate the captain of the guards and the other Lipid guard, who had now been transfered under him, waited anxiously. They were looking at both sides Repressor has not arrived yet; the old man would be here _any moment" he said in a low tone''-ll hope you are all set for the...." "There he is" said the guard

of the gate. The captain managed to corner his ' accomplice alone for a short white .,That blasted

"Ah! come''
Both of them moved towards the Repressor who had arrived, the guard took on the task of frisking him and then allowed him through. Theotherguards did not bother as they took it as the usual routine.

.

As the Repressor moved past the captain
whispered

he

"l am on my way"
"Make it snappy we have'nt much time',
(44).

As the Repressor entered the Gene building, general lgG came out. The general had an odd habit of parking his car outside the main gate rather than the usualcar park nearthe building. He didthis deliberately, as he used to say that it allowed his some distance to walk and hence served as an excersise. The general began moving in long strides towards the main gate. The Repressor had reached the floor on which the main computer was installed and was looking through one of the windows in the spirals at what was to happen below. As the general was approaching the gate, the guard unfastened his holster which contained a spray gun and was loaded for one blast only, as the hiding of an accessory cylinder would have been conspicuous. The captain too moved his hand on his gun. At that moment, as the general had come very noar the gate, the soldier in him evoked his danger instincts. The guard confronted himwith the spray gun, and straight away gave him afull blast of that lethal liquid specially formulated for this target. Although the geneYal had sensed the danger, age and body bulk hacl highly slowad down hls reflexes, he did try to duck and sprang al the guard holdlng his neck, but the liquid had begun Ita aotlun, A eplll aaeond latot the captain shotthe guard from bghind, Then he ran towards the pair and heJd the rlaad puard and quickly slipped a piece of folded paper into the breast poeket of the dead guard. lt was pre-planned that th'e guard had to be shot after he had served his purpose. The etfect of the liquid on the General was instantaneous. lt spliced his body into three pieces, the head slid away from the neck and the remaining torso split right through the middle into two. lt was a ghasily sight. The Repressor who had witnessed all this ran towards the door of the computer room snfl presseda. button which rang a bellinside. The operators came out
(45)

"tvhat is it?" "The general has been killed at the main gate!,, "Oh my gosh!"

fhe loss that we have suffered is irrepairable for the time

being; but a more serious question arises now and that

were printed out. He opened the printout unit with a screw driver and placed the small metallic device inside in a position specified to him and again ctosed up the
unit.

computer and located the portion from where the codes

Allthe operators started running down. AND had been right, the effect of the killing waJso,strong that ;ll the workers including the secu-rity staff had f"ft ihJ, positions and were }ushing towirds tn", *ain trt. leaving the securityloom unmanned. rtwas a calcurited risk, but it worked. The Repressor'ran towards the

"Demands? when did they arrive?" asked an RNA "lt is only one demand which was found on the dead guard. The captain at the gate who is absconding,

along with this dead guard had conspired with Oncogene group in this assasination ..."

th-e

"IChief, sorry to interrupt, but you have mentioned the Oncogene party twice, how do you know of its

existence?')

:

Thereafter, he joined the crowds outside. Jhey all assembled again in the meeting room of the Gene building,..the atmosphere was extremely tense. They all satwith their heads down, in silence. Th6 RNAs looked confused while Glycogen bore a hagqard look on his face and for once he tEn totally oev6io ot humour, the generals chair was empW and-evervbodv felt very bad about it. lnspector Steroid, who usuafy wai a. very active participant in these meetings wds as gloomy as the,others and sat staring at theioof. Quietly DNA began the proceedings ... "l can understand your feelings, the assasination of the general is indeed a tremendous blow to our c9u1try. As we had all.guessed earlier, this is the doing of AND and the members of his so called Oncogen6 party. The general was in fact infallible, but- the substance this time used was nothing but a mixture of two specific types of.proteases Trypsi- and papain, that can split immunoglobins into threb parts as you all,'saw.

.

on the dead guard is signed by AND and he calls himself the leader of the Oncogene party. Their demand is to have a separate nation that they would call, Neoplasia"

"l am coming to that, this note recovered

"Neoplasia? but this is preposterous chief!" the inspector spoke for the first time. "True Ster, and I am not going to concede to this tlernand at any lost...."
'Why not glv6 hlm the wlth lt" said Glycogen
1;txtarnn

nation and be done

"Gome my friend you do not realize the implications of conceding. Once Cell is divided it would initiate successive divisions process called, 'metastasis'. Every new country would be governed by the oncogqne..g ario as you hav'e atiseen inEi nivJ onri three aims in life - destroy, disintegrate and biviOe. fn6 net outcome of the process woutd mean tgtal destruction and death to all" There was an aching silence in the room.

a

(46)

(471

"So what do we do?,,asked the inspector "AND has given us 24 hours to reply and if we do not concede he wiil raunch a finar assaurt that he cails the M-alternative which he claims would destroy cellfor all times. Let him do what he rikes but we wifl not concede, we wiil face the situation whateverfoilows. ceil cannot be destroyed that easily, Let AND think thbt he holds allthe aces right now but he is quite unaware of a finaltrump that r stiil hold. rf he does not stop or even launches the M-alternative, he will be only digging his own grave, as I have been considerate long enough. so, gentelmen go on and continue with your duties but we shail at no cost ailow cellto split" They alrdispersed lmmediately after the meeting, DNA gave a nationwide address : "Citizens of Cell, by now you a[ must.be aware of th_e happenings in our iountry. Firsity tei;s plI gyr lgfage.lo that.great rirartyr _ generalige ;ho nao so werr run the defence depdrtment of cdtt ih tne past- His brutal assasination by these madmen has rgldelqd a serious btow to ail of ris and the siOOJsi oJn of it all is that we have been let down br-o* people. These defectors who have nbw loine'O the gfgyq are traitors. tt is hishty o.bioiror. oi 9l1og^r1p mem to.grve this in return for the country that has done so much for them. They were born her6, grew up here an_d,io-day they are bbnt upon destroyiig inei-, o*, motherland. My only humble appeal to you all is to remain you.have iri the pa6t. Do not give in-io '1l?gl"pq,as erements that would try to break us up, for theiet result would mean total destruction to all oi us. continu. *iin

group

shall not, I repeat not, concede to to thls unreasonable demand of a separate nation byAND and his Oncogene Lastly lwould say only one thing, have faith in rne. Thank you."

your work and face all the onslaughts bravely, the defence and security people are always with you. We

ln the Sink, AND and his group also heard the
speech made by DNA. As the words penetrated AND,s head they created a turmoil. He had so wellplanned the first two stages of his operation and had also met with success, that ho had never anticipated that the Cell people would not concede to his demand. He frett6d and fumed in anger..." "What now master?. they have not...,, "Shut up! the fools, they have no idea of my power. you all have nothing to do now but to sit and watch the show, for quite a show it is going to be',

,;;;r;d

,;r'ffi;

Hs loft thom and went inside his laboratory. He wont to hls working table on which was arranged a control panel consisting of two coloured buttons. lt was in fact a remote control for the device implanted in the print-out unit of the mdn computer in the Gene building.
He moved his hands over the contror paner as if unabre to decide which button .to press first,. and finally his fingers pressed one of the infernal buttons.".

The
launched.

catastrophic M-alternative
(4e)

had

been

(48)

THE M-ALTERNATIVE The sudden cessation of all powerstations oave a momentary the attacks on the rerief to irr-tni J"oor" of ceil. Thev ev-en.came to berierie inrii[Jirlr#rJyrlo been evaded. gut-it *rJonry 6iiia *no rearized that this was only a lull before the stirrr. ' ' And then it began, at first there were only few, but g1aoryily besan io incr."s.. Every robot Ir.ol9,n being manufactured in the Ribosor"i,*JJ-" totally non-functionar one ano tay in".tirJ"ilo i"ro. Some of them did manag." to .rfri're Ori ontyio;r;;; while' rt was indeed a pitheticJghiio watch, as sutside

*:f::1!93

Several mRNAs could be seen running frantically from factory to factory. The tRNAs kept bringing AAs to the facJories at an abnormal pace and they knew that very soon their stock of the EAAs would exhaust and what then? The rRNAs laboured like horses in the ninosomes but alltheir efforts were useless, as every robot protein manufactured by them was either non-functional or incomplete. What puzzeled them most was the sudden appearenc6 of a nonsense codon signalling the abrupt end of a sequence.

!g non-functionar robots. The entire area around the factories had suddenly been tiansformed into a graveyard with unattend-ed corpses,
more devastating, as all prffi;yr'iH":, lhe "onr"oiondepended on the robot .n=v*r, dd ;il; t;; standstilr, onry the ord ones siiil managing-thei; *-or[ maintained some.activity. This too, aff ti"-Crii;"o;; knew, was not going to iast tor ev-er. The moit ,:";iJr; blow came wheTr tn6 nlrmo.;;, ilrat were such prized products of Ce,.began to ;bin-tn, d;ad iI l[" graveyards. No otherlo.untry'wouro hormones and they woutd s6on iiop tnei, rrLrJJI ;rppty ;; EMs and Vitamins to Cell. Glycogen, lnspector, Steroid and the late generat lgG had highly suffered in the initial assaufts Ly the oncogene group. This time, it was the turn of the

ylab.le

[id?i:{ff J:ls,fisi,t};i,iJ:xT;-ln6i.,},"#: onty to seccumb rater. The ,axrin'}oispoiiiuniiri*
cope.up with ,rch farge-nu;Odi.S'lt

Only one question hammered in evervbodies head - what had suddenly gone wrong? Why th'is great rntegrative system that they had formeO ahO hal so much faith in, was falling apart? For the first time in the history of Cell the people felt their faith.in DNA to waver hls reputation for being the all time maste, ,t ,ti-f.uj

*r,

1

The overall effect on Cell was even

;.;ili

RNAs.

DNA took onthe task to unfathom the mystery behind tlrrs'sudden catacyclsm that C"ll *ar tading. ?G; i; th6 raBeareh and analysis department wit6 the ever felthfullnspector Stqroid as his lone assistant, he began a rn€Bi seale post mortem session on the dead prote-ins and mtnd you rl was no easy task. Thc structure of qvery protein went through four levels of organization. The primary structure coilsisted glty o.fa straightforward chain of amino acids, this chain folded upon itself to form a secondary siiJctui;.-A -the lurller fgldi!9 took ptace to give' rise to 3-dimensional, or tertiary structure lnd finally sereral tertiary structural units combined to form tne tirnctionJi or active quatenary structure of the protein. rne-entire active conformation of a protein depended on the o,A sequence in the primary structure.
(51)

(50)

task.

So DNA had to go backwards in the above scheme for every protein, to finally get the pri*iry structrue of each and this was a very time con'suming
began

1. Cause a 'transversion' or change in letter e.g. Ethyl Ethane Sulphonate (EES)

thereafter. This involved the amino aciO sequencil!. Every primary structurar unit consisted of a c+erminir and a N-terminal, sequencing courd be done from either terminal. DNA had long suspected the cause, but after his analysis, his suspicion turned to belief. The amino acid sequence in all the proteins was either totally incorrect or was wrong only at certain portions. Allthis pointed to only one thing - codon sequences that he obtained from the computer were incorrect. Hence a mass mlsreading of the code had occured and the resuli of which was the dead robots. As soon as DNA had discovered this

, 9n..9 theaprimary structure of every protein had been obtained everrmore raborious pro6edere

2. Cause a 'insertion' or 'deletion' of letter e.g.
Acridine which is a flavin dye.

3. Cause a 'distortion' e.g. Ultraviolet (UV)
radiation. Of these he chose the first two type to cause the havoc. Their effects could be visualized to occur as
follows: Normal codon sequence
-

AUG-AUC-GAA-UGA-CGA....

chanse ot'"n"i;o-AUc-AGG-uGA-cGA
...

"rror= Acridine,'insertion - Normal

, to"

h"n"" incorrect AAs

he ran to the computer room and checked the

programme. The programme was perfectly alright, no mistakes at all, no evidence of tampering either. Hethen checked the printouts, they were also correct, then where lay the error? For the first time in his life DNA was totally baffled.
the M-alternative? During the days AND had been studying the code he did a large amount of experimental work.. ln these studies he had had discovered a set of agents that could alter the codon sequences in different ways. These were classified as follows :
(52)

AUG-AUC-GAA-UGA-CGA ..., lnsert A betwen nucleotide'3 and 4
AUG-AAU-CGA-AUG-ACG...

incorrect sequence hence

incorrect AAs
AcrrrJrrre deletion - Normal

Now what was the principle behind

AUG.AUC-GAA-UGA-CGA
Delete A from nucleotide 4

AUG-UCG-MU.GAC-GA.... incorrect sequence hence incorrect AAs
(53)

The net result would be a wrong sequence either in portions or compeletely, nence aini"r""Oinj,r'il" factory to produc.. q na.tiatty tuctional or non-functional protein. The'scramble in completely G ;;d;, sequence also occasionally led to the formation?" nonsense codon_and,hence the proces, *orfO rnJr[ producing an incomplete proteinThei two chemicals EES and Acridine.had been compounded into one singre substance in the oJri.* placed,in the p_rint out unit 5no ineii effects differentiailv controtted by the two butrons on

9rl,.ng the transit from the C"ne nrifOing to tne ticioriJs by the mRNAs. rt was this trick tniipi"*nted DNA fronr detecting the device in the print oLI unit. Since the robot proteins formed were all ,mutants, caused by a 'mutation, in the sequence AND called " the 'mutant arternative'or simpry ti,'u-atternatil;i- it

AND;;"r"i;';;tri panel. AND had very cleverly manipulat.O in. concentrations of the chemicals in such ,;rry tnrt tn"i, woutd bgOln a bit tate i.e.1ne cnang, i;in. " 9f9cts sequence would'nt be immediate but" *orfJ "od;; ;;;

'

PREPARING FOR ACTION ' --A bio black car approached the main gate of th.e Gene buildinq and came to a sudden halt. The guards it tne oate m"oved towards it and on seeing the person iittino Tn it. immediatelv waved him through .(they had beeriore-instructed about the visitors arrival). lhe car had a'lone passenqer who was driving it- He pa.rt(eglhq Caiin the pbrkinq ldt and came out. Many p-egplg of Cell who had clusterEd around the periphery of the bulldlng in small qroups were staring at him- Even the entlre stafi bi t,J oiito'rrig inctuoing th"e gul?!'ds wondered who he waiT fnere Were two ffiost s-triking features about the min wno fiaO Just arrived, one.wa6 his enormous built un? tne other ivas his face, which was totally devoid of anv exoression. He moved in powerful strldes towaros tnd iriirince of the building and then ascended ,o*a-rOs-- towards the mebting room' Nobody -as they were . all or- questioned him, "S.lircIeo to'allow him through' Every eye that oie--intimated watcneO him go was awe struck bt the sheer fear that ni= oeisondinTexuded. The man crinfronted DNA in the me5t,nglooni, tney were the only two present there' "Please sit down" Tho man surveved the chairs and selectqd.tle gurrrrirls ehiiir, ni tndt was the biggest and sat in it in trn ete(it slttncn "l)o yott itirvrt ttrty icltltl of what had been going rrror rrrl'1" "A bit" "So tirst I will give you the complete story" "Go on" DNA related the entire happenings that had occured so far in detail. "l do not wish to cr:itisize our ISD or the defence bovs. lnJact inspector Steroid has done a tremendous io-d wiin nii deijartment and has always been a close hide of mine in this grim situation. Even thegeneral.has oaid the price of this maniacal onslaught- But this time I-teet tnli we-aie up aoainst an enemy-whose strength and resources are'belong the grasp-of the ISD or.the defence. The heavy foll In terris of man power that
(55)

(54)

lll=tggp,qrtments_have suffered make this evident. So commander Tor yo.u1 time to ict'h'as come, we have never used vour rinit in-in! flisT6li'io.cray the situation o E'i: s'"ff u; i 33$tr

l"tf

"lt will be ct_one', saiit commander ^Y8E"fiyl'ml3lil[ii:]h
otl= c?o ilB
fx

t

R.V. Tor the
S

mine. ""

=

.iP,.'fJT,"?,i. !v vr rrrr v

;y#ft,*."* t
I

*,=n,#[?'9all3ts,f,t}{',fi3,to act' but before vou so I p^* h is breist pocket an d P,llAI extracted a'smallif I'glg _,Gide
obiect and g;ve;'it "What is that?'1

idiffi'.8;"ffhE,J;

?y,lqtjr*tgy c_al.Wejn any of your jlrn'eiiirr.i,rl#..i1 [:g]L?lgT:.,.gggtgtidnrion-arul rrrs..r rlr.,ur any range SprgaOS B ii over 1,."""1';b { ty h Ifi #liliqd all #: lj ;LiB E:i.Jx!: n destroy. on "iir trt othd-n oboiri' ;i#1'
,J,^i:^3
"Whv?" whv?

Itur;i-'{&"Bl'"%'iilS,r,?1,'fJ%?,.??ts#sigsft ,',,.,^,,},i "rn;

ngffie#flgil.*ni
left.

;:ffi

d'"lr3,

ff[g:;33,E?nha,n;rsi,x?sx{*il:f'[,",fflr5i
The Commander got up, pocketed the bullet - -- s-' -r-' revvr\ and

Nobody in Cell except for DNA knew about the thjs spebiaiil'eJ" uriii -';rru;"' iii; ' Retrovectors' n o r nao e[e r tF e Siiu atiori'ards?' id util'i'zE them. rhe entire u.rii walq ihd d;;iion oT Drux[iHdEit and he kept the unit as a tin-ai reZigi;id 6 b'e usilil'o"njv in a hopelEss situation iitie tne prE#ifi;.v sgvv vr rrv . Ihe Retroveuor.s belongiiO-to J JpJ.i"f ctass of n u c e c a c d s . o ri g n a riy t[ e-re-iSre"tevriin-ririm #i it was by sheer cHanc6 ih;i-D NA"h;d' sii, ri,[i#" Gli; them .in-a secruoe.g Lgrn.ei oi'ceil- Thii"'"*li."ffili remarkabte properties. in them t6ii' oiH'iot,,'#J these were, firstlv tneii immeft;'bilit wiiiiah iiililnt,'il

existence

.

of

I

i

i

i

ili

.

iiil

very strong and poweful and secondly, which Was a rather odd trait, they totally lacked any emotion. lt was this second propefi that imparted them a fearJul look. DNA studied the class and decided to build robot replicas that were quite identical to the original Retrovectors. The objective behind DNAs effort was to exploit the properties of the Retrovectors for a specific purpose that would suit them. The secluded area from where they came was cordoned off and converted to a manufacture cum training centre. An altogether separate special synthesizing unit was set up here, which functioned just like the other Cell factories, except that the Enzymes involved were different. These enzymes were called the Fleverse transcriptase and Restriction endonucleases which were specifically adapted to bring about the manufacture of the Retrovectors. R.V. Torwas an originalRetroveetorfound by DNA and he was made the commander of the unit. Under him the entire Retrovector unit was placed. After DNA had told commander Tor what he wanted, a process of rigourous training began. The schedulo was so tough that occasionally a Retrovector would lose hls life in the training, but it was the peculiar emotional absence that made the others continue. These Retrovectors were perfected in the art of killing. The target may be one, two or many a single Retrovector was skilled enough to kill as many as they come before calling it a day. As the attacks of the Oncogene group were taking place, DNA had isolated lar{e amdunt5 ot tne lethal liquid used in their spray guns. This stuff he had sent to the Retrovector' training centre to be tested on the Retrovectors themselves. The re-sults were
(57)

(56)

excellentasthe liquid wasfoundto have littleeffect on the nucleic acid characterestics in them as they were nucleic acids and this inrparted a naturalprotectiv'e sheild to the Retrovectors. At one time DNA had even contemplated on the idea to use the Carbohydrates against the Oncogenes, but their being totally unskilled in any form of warfare went against them. To train them at such a short notice was also not possible and moreover, DNA thought, that when he had this specialized unit o{ the Retrovectors why opt for the Carbohydrates? Despite of theirnot being putto any use atallsofarin Cell, thefitness of the unit was never allowed to slacken for all these years. DNA had taken a personal interest in the unit and had maintained constant follow-up with the aboutthe activities in the centre. commander Now the day had dawned when the entire future of Cell depended on the Retrovectors. The disaster caused in Cell by the M-alternative was received with great joy in the Sink. Small groups could be seen huddled around televisions watching the reports that were coming in. Each bad news was cheered and loud slogans like 'Long live AND' 'Long live the Oncogene party' and 'Come Neoplasia' could be heard everywhere. AND was dancing around in his lab, laughing hysterically and pressing the two buttons at frequent intervals. On watching the effects caused he used to shudder in glee. Most of his followers sat watching the drama and their master in admiration. "You saw all that boys? I hold their bloody neck and its upto me as to how hard I squeeze. The time is'nt :far off when they would concede and then we all would be free and have a world of our own. My life times dream Neoplasia!"

AFMAGEDDON
Wlrrln ANt)'s group in the Sink was celebrating arrrl llrn rlll/cllli of Cell were facing the brunt of the M allnrnirlrvc ir truckful of Retrovectors headed by r r ln ln r;rr rr krr tl.V. Tor was speeding steadily towards the iirrrh llrrr ;rl;rn divised by the commander was a very
.;nlrl)k! onc-a direct,attack on the Sink, the Retrovectors wuukl krll any thing that came their way and he himself

woulcl go for the main prey, that was AND'

a

About a rnile or so from the Sink, the truck came Io ;r lr;rll. Crtttttnander Tor got out and the Retrovectors filrrtl on orre side awaiting further instructions. "Frorn here onwards, we make it on foot" said tlre cornrnander "As we reach near the Sink we split into two etroups forming two semi-circles aroud the Sink rrrrrl tlren we descend from the periphery. Thereafter, wlrnl nirr:lr oR., rlf yotr has to do has already been lr rrrlt t tr;tet I I tttw ltlttvtt! "

ttttc;tlrt their brisk march lnwrtrrl:i lltntt (ltxrl Ortr:c tlley had encircled the Sink llrey lrel;rrt tlrntt rlrt:;cortt. t=verything about them was

llre llnlrttvnt;ltltti

:io nlnllrurlrt:irl, t;o well ttmed that it seemed as though llroy trlrl urtdergone such operations severaltirnes. The attack on the Oncogenes came quite :;uclclenly and they were taken by surprise. The Ilctrovectors killed whatever came their way with r.;rlkrus indifference. Sheer massacre was all that they
(5e)

'

(58)

indulged in as they moved downwards. By the time they had reached the base, panic had arready struck and the

oncogenes courd been seen running herter and skerter
below the disposar unit. They were frightened because none of their weaponery seemed to have any effect on the Retrovectors and moreoverthe total absence of any expression on the face of their attackers scared them ait the more. Once inside the disposal unit, the commander ran all aroud desperately searching for AND. Whatever

As time was ticking by he slowly began tapping thc walls of the tunnels with the butt of his gun, he knew ltrat if there was a door concealed somewhere in the walls he would make it out by the sound difference.

At long last after some labour he made out the outlines of a possible opening. Once he had done this
he quickly fixed small detonators on the wall and moved

away to avoid the blast.

A loud explosion followed that shook the entire
tunnel as bits of rock fell all over and a cloud of smoke prevailed. Waving aside the smoke and particles in the atmosphore the commander entered the opening. What tre found inside was a large room with all sorts gadgetery arranged all over and rightthere in the middle of thc room he saw the sight of his life, that would have probably shocked others but not him. He could not bellcve his eyes for a moment, but soon he realized that ll war a herd reallty that eonfronted him. ln the mlddle ol the room were four large circular platforma on top of which stood four exactly similar replleae ol AND which wore completely naked. On top of thelr heads was a circurlar lamp slightly lesser in dlamerter than the platforms below. A powerful beam of light was enmanating from the lamps in which the bodies seemed to be bathed. The four figures looked identical and made a very prominent sight as the rest of the room was in total darknes. Allfour spoke in unision and the entire room reasonated with AND's voice ....
(61)

He ran after him. The tunnels were dug in a zig-zag fashion and although the commander raR vary fast he courd not see AND- He onry heard his footfafis at a distance indicating that his target was on the run.

had reached ANDs laboratory and just saw him slip through one of the side doors into the tunners below.

commander allowed his boys to do their job, he himself

resistance the oncogenes offered was infinitismar compared to the brute force of the Retrovectors. The years of training grinded into the Retrovectors had at last proved useful and too overwhelming for the oncogenes as they seccumbed to the attack. whire the

The chase continued for some time till the commander reached a dead end. there was nothing ove.r there. except a dimly lit overhead tamp anI darkness all aroud.
disappeared?, wondered the commander is got be an'opening somewhere around here, he just connot vanish.,
(60)

'Where

the hell had AND ,There

"Ah! so you have made it in, but mind you do not make any attempts to come near me or should I say us?" and Etoud taughter followed... "There is a comprete high energy barrieraroundus tld yilt disintegrate anybody"comin!'near. i t<now att about that goddamned bullet that DNA may have given you to destroy me. r had worked on that srosian& to, quite sometime, but to isolate large 116rrl, oi it'i, impossible. so inail probabirity you hlve onry one builet, -spares are out ofquestion. But are,nt you in a fix? We are fo. ur targets over here and you have onry one bu[et, identify the correct gnd yoJ win. t am quitJ rri, tnrt you are aware that1e the present situatioh you cannot in gamble either !,' another 6r'd lrughi;, 3fl9rd lo
followed.

,

As the words permeated the commanders mind, h+r quietly settled down in one corner, he had about an Irour to somehow identify the true AND in the four rcplicas and destroy him.
This problem had to end once and for all, DNA had given him the rneans and had placed his entirefaith onto him, he must succeed, failure was out of question. If he did fail, AND would emerge again in a probably more diabolicalway, but how? The commander held his head in his hands and thought hard.

Commander Tor had thought about this the moment he had seen the four replicas of AND. "Wellwhat happens if I do gamble and lose?,, "The most obvious question, and a good one, you see these rays falling on bur bodies? tt riitt tat<e dntri an hour or so for them to.get fully activateO. OnL" tn"V do so, all the molecules.in my Sody would ipfit +ai and then nothing woutd remain. tiut mind ior, i[i, dispersal would only be temporary, Oecause ine molecules wourd never forget ineir attinity toi-eacn othet their memory is infallidle and permenint. So say a cou.ple of years all of them woiltO r.e_org"nii; ii6 ?1."I AND would be reborn only to continue nis tite tono ambition of dividing celr and establishing l,reopLs,a. i saw theway you baggars kiiled, when t dmergijgJn i may find a way to dearwith you as weil and thtn r-sniri reign supreme."
(62)

Although commander Tor, like allthe R€trovectors wns totally devoid of emotion, but during his life time he trad done a lot of reading on emotions, psychology and behaviour of the mind. Natural deprivation of these traits interested him all the more in the subject and it had come to become one of his favourite topics of study. His Eludles in this field ultimately gave him the answer he wac looking for, he knew it had to work. He looked around thc room and thare in front of the four figures hr lound what he sought - a television. For the first time alnce the oporatlon had begun he put in a contact to DNA.,.

"R to D" "D to R, I hear you well go on"
"Chief lneed your help, lguess ourtelevision boys must be having video films of all the happenings ever since trouble had.started?"
(63)

"Yes, but why?,' "l;ll answer your question later, but I want you to instruct our television centre to begin a replay oithr* films right from the beginrng, especiaily those firms that show a maximum amount of disaster and chief do this right away I am running out of time, l,ll wait for about five minutes" be done in less than five miiutei.,;

on power station one. The commander's logic was very straightforward - on seeing his own creation AND,s eyes had to betray him. When a creator looks at his own creation may it be a sculptor, architect, artist, playwrite
or any creator of any sort, that peculiar glintthat his eyes

They broke contact and the commander .. looking at his watch. After exa&it fi* ;iil;;, sat ;; moved towards the terevision set and switchro it on. n" lgo[ a position behind the set and sat gazing ilt*iry ; the faces of the four figures. The television boys of Coll had done a wonderful job. As the commentator began his descriptions, the screen began to display the disasters caused by AND and his oncogenes in detair, right from the first attack

The trick employed by the commander worked with fantastic results, which even he had never expected. Not only the eyes of AND, but his entire body made him stand out in the lot, as the non-responders were only dummies. As the descriptions and the film were coming to an end he quivered in glee. The commander had quite early spotted AND to be the second from left in the quartret, but he made himself doubly sure before he took careful aim and fired the fateful bullet. The effect of the ingredients in the bullet
on AND was remarkable, just as the protease had eaten through the Proteins. Bit by bit his body started falling apart like bits that come apart from lepers except that

in AND's case the agony was unbearable, he was
moaning and writhing in pain. As the foam exuded a perpetual stench spread over the entire room.
called 'Streptodornase' isolated from certain bacteria called Streptococci. Streptodornase has the property of breaking down Nucleic acids to completion. The results of the compound were evident as AND lay there on the platform as an unidentifyable mass. Quite ironically, his own creation betrayed him and proved to be his undoing. Had AND been a normal person he would have probably succeeded in maintaining a steady expression, but he was not, he was a fanatical genius with a warped mind which only served in catalyzing his end.
(6s)

The bullet contained a substance

show is unmistakabre. rt is for adrniration of his own work, it is a glint of satisfaction, it is a glint of pride, it is a glint that cannot be grouped into a single expression. The glint embodies a sum total of his entire toil and sweat, his defeats, his frustrations, with his ultimate victory in the end as the creation beholds him.
(M)

The Retrovectors led by commander R.V.llcr had done a complete job. lt was a clean swipe, all the Oncogenes along with their leader had been destroyed. It was a cleansing operation in Cell that was to be long remembered. commander Tor had coilected ail thl literature stored in AND's laboratory and had it sent to the Gene building- From this riterature DNA rocated the position of that disasterous device that had triggered the M-alternativerlt had caused severe damage to the Proteins and he had it removed at once. Although AND and his Oncogenes had been destroyed, the scars left
painful. Mopping up operations would take a very long time and restoration to normalacy,was stillfar away and DNA was quiet aware of these facts.

GLOSSARY
1. Amino Acid . there are 22 Amino Acids

lrroteins of which some 10 are called the Essential Arnino Acids as they have to be obtained from an oxternal source. These Essential Amino Acids are collectively called 'MATVILPHLY' where each letter
stands for an amino acid e.g. M for Methionine any Ly for Lysine. 2. A,U,G,C & T : these letters stand for the five

found in

nucleotides

or

bases Adenine, Guanine, Uracil.

by their activities were still very deep and

Cytosine and Thymine that form the building blocks of the Nucleic acids, along with phosphate molecules. 3. Carbohydrates are the simplest type of

molecules found in the Cell e.g. Glucose a monosaccharide, Maltose a disaccharide and Glycogen a polysaccharide. The Carbohydrates are readily soluble in water and largely meet up to the

:

The only thing, which was of great respite to DNA was, that the division of Cell had been averted and above all Cell was still viable. For as long as a system the causal agents eliminated,'recovery is the rule.
is viable, however severe may be the damage and once

energy requirements of the Cell. 4. Codon, code : A codon is a unit composed of three nucleotides i.e. a triplet that codes for a single arnino acid. There are a total of 64 codons that.form the lturretie cods, of which two codons initiate a chain for ;troterirt syntlresis while three terminate a chain and are callerJ 'nonsclnse codons'. The genetic code has found to be univcrsal for all living organisms. 5. Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA) : a Nucleic acid composed of the nucleotides A, G, & C. lt is a double standard molecule, the strands entwine on each other forming double helix, that resembles spiral staircase. The entire biological fate of an individual is governed by the DNA, the units of information stored in it are referred to as 'genes' 6. Endoplasmic Reticulum (ER) these are membranous structures on which the Ribosomes are attached, the ER and the Ribosomes are sites for Protein

I

a

a

:

sYnthesis'

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(67)

;to the,Krebs cycre-pl6orcriJ .o- roi".rres of Adenosine Triph_osphate (AIp) through tnen4itochondria. The energy is stored in these m6bcures in the torm oi r,lgn phosphate bonds. This occur. ,nJui'r-"roBi. 9nerg..y conditions. under anaerobic conoitions, the Kiebi.u.l, does not function and ontye produced.

7.,Energy Qount : The breakdown of one glucose motecute, through glycotysis ano

suoseil";iHiry

,or".rr6i;;ip?,

14. Lactate Dehydrogenese (LDH): This enzyme brings aboutthe conversion of Pyruvateto Lactate and vice-versa. lt is known to exist in five different forms which are called the LDH isozymes. The enzyme acts under anaerobic conditions thus only 2 molecules of ATP are produced from the Glycolytic pathway. 15. Lecithin : is a phospholipid molecule belonging to the Lipids.

Cell.

Enzymes: These are protein molecules that catalyze the various metabolic rrrction. o""uriiglnil;,

16. Lipids : This class of molecules are
characterized by their non-solubility in water. They are only soluble in organic solvents, like ethyl alcohol or ether. Fatty acids like palmitate, phosphilipids like Lecithin and the steroids are members of this class. Lipids in conjunction with proteins in the form r,f Lipoproteins form an important component of the Ce I membrane and other membranous structures within th,
Cell. 17. Mitochondria : they are also called the 'Power houses' of the Cell. Within the mitochondria is present an Electron transport chain, through which electrons deriv6d from the chemical conversions involved in glycolysis and the Krebs cycle are passed and ATP molocules are produced at three points.

o, * n?,[!33t il J : 3J3t1? iS'iSHJf i,, L3ffi,l? Glycogen in the Cett and wneneveigtucose Glycogen is broken down totineratb it.

f;

L;*il;;,

_, _ 10.. Glycolysis : The process of breakdown of glucose to_pyruvic
termed as Glycolysis. l l.Hormones : These compounds are produced by the endocrine gr,ductles= _#ri-0. ot oui OoOy.3;;; ,re protein in nature.ihey are required in very mrnute quantities and usuaily act a't a site duite from the Ce[ producing

acid, mediated Oy tne

;;r;;;;.

lI:T

the five that are known to exist. 13. Krebs cycle: This is a Central grand station in rL the metaboric network of the ceil, wheTrl.rrriiliv'rri jfre pathways.converge upon. Since the conversion of Pyruvate to citrate oegins'tne cycte it is ' -'- ' ario .irr.o ir,, Citric acid

ite$. fn.riir. ' 12. tmmunoglobins": protein molecules . also known as the Rntib6dies .l.reyirp;n rrlrru.,iVini serve as a defence mechanisril against i"fr1ii";: lmmunoglobin G it i1r-9 mijor Ertiorov J,iiiid SL lgg '

# il;i

18. Metastasis : The uncontrolled division of cancer cells leading to its proliferation is called
metastasis. 19. Mutations : Alterations in the genetic code or DNA that lead to the production of incorrect proteins or traits are called mutations. These may be natural or induced by chemical mutagens like ethyl ethane sulphonate (EES), Acridine or Ultraviolet radiations.

_

cycle

growth.

is commonly used to refer to a cancerous lesion or t
(6e)

20. Neoplasia : the term means'new growth'and

(68)

21. Nucleic acids : DNA and RNA are the Nucleic acids. 22. Nucreus : is a structure present in ail the ceils except the red blood Cells. DNA is present inside the nucleus. 23. Oncooenes : This is a term usually used to refer to Nucreic"acid nrateriailil; in viruses that know to cause cancer in animits. rhese ui.iei are rr" Oncogenic viruses. AND and tne Sinr<, tf" L"rO :?lpq or.rne uncogenes and their location in Celi are pure fiction. 24. Palmitate: This is a fatty acid belong to the Lipid class. 25. Protease : is a common term used to refer to enzymes known to split protein moleicules frypsin ,nO Papain are proteases tlrat can sprit immunogrboins into three portions.
r

30^ Repressors: These are small

protein

rrrolecules involved in the control mechanisms of the ri ,,yrrllress of proteins. The presence of a repressor on Itrr: DNA usually negates protein synthesis.

31. Retrovectors : This is a word coined from the rotroviralvector system which consists of viral DNA into wlrich a genomic DNA has been insefted, these :;ystems are nowadays being used in gene therapy
rr11;rilrst cancer.

32. Ribosomes : are sites of protein synthesis
rrllirr:lrnrl to the endoplasmic reticulum (ER)

33. RNA Ribonucleic acids: These are Nucleic
nciels composed of A,U,G.& C nucleotides and are of

26. Protease lnnibitors : are a group of gompoylds protein or non-protein in nature tiat ihniOit rne.. acttvtty of proteases e.g. the Soyabean Trypsin
innibitor.

lluce types

:

like lnsulin are examples. 28. Protein Synthesis : See RNAs.

composed of Amino acids. Their finar-s-dim"nlionir conformation is governed by the amino s"qrenc" present in the primary stru-cture. Thev aie-nionl, versatrre in nature a.nd.perform a variety-of functidns. Enzymes, immunoglobihs and some otine normones

27. Proteins

:

These are large molecules

(1) rnRNA or messenger RNA is formed on the llNA lly H llro(le:ls torrrled as transcription.
(!,)

lltNA

rtr ltttnstttr llNA brings the Amino acids

ln lltrr nlle ttf ;trttlttttt :;yt'ttho:;ls, the Ribosomes on the

In
(3)

rRNA or ribosomal RNA resides in the

29.Pyruvate Dehydrogenese (pDH) :Thisisinfact enzyme complex that brings about the conversion of Pyruvate to Acetyl co-enzyme A, Which is then converted to Citrate by another enzyme.

" an

liitrosomos its functions are unclear but is postulated to lrold the IRNA carrying the AA correctly on the codons on the mRNA attached to the Ribosomes. The formation of proteins on the ribosomes rlirnded by the codon sequences on mRNA is termed ari lranslation. The entire scheme is as follows :
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(70)

Transcription
DNA mRNA

Transtation

Proteins

+
AA- IRNA

on Ribosomes.

34. Streptodornase: this is mixture of lytic enzymes isolated from the bacteria called Streptococci that completely break down the nucleic acids.
35. Steroids: They are a class of compounds gr6uped in the lipids and have characterestic Perhydrocycloplentane phenanthrene ring, s66lssterol testosterone are some exqmples.

a

external source. The B-complex series form the co-enzymes that are integral components of the

36. \rftamins: They are a group of compounds termeC as additional grourth factors obtained tro, an

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