Molecular Genetics DNA  Deoxyribonucleic acid is a double stranded coiled structure found in the nucleus of the cell.

 It contains genetic information that is important for all cellular functions. Nucleotide  The nucleotide is the basic unit of DNA.  The nucleotide consists of a deoxyribose, phosphate group and nitrogenous bases. Types of nitrogenous bases  Adenine (A), Cytosine (C), Guanine (G) and Thymine (T)  Each base combines with a deoxyribose sugar and phosphate group to form different nucleotide molecules. Polynucleotides  Long chains of nucleotides joined together.  Formed when the phosphate group of one nucleotide joins to the sugar of another.  Polynucleotides can have many sequences of nucleotides.  Certain sections of polynucleotides from genes. Complementary Base Pairing  The DNA molecule consists of two anti-parallel (in opposite directions) polynucleotide chains coiled to from a double helix.  The two polynucleotide strands are held together by complementary strands.  Adenine (A) pairs with Thymine (T). Adenine and Thymine are therefore called complementary base pairs.  Guanine (G) pairs with Cytosine (C).  Hence, the ratio between Adenine (A) to Thymine (T) and Guanine (G) to Cytosine (C) is always 1:1.

 A genetic mutation alters the nucleotide sequence affecting the structure and function of the polypeptide formed. more than one gene is required to code an entire protein.  Translation whereby information encoded in the RNA is used to synthesise a polypeptide.  As one gene codes for one polypeptide.  Only one of the polynucleotide chains in genes codes for the polypeptide. Each set of three bases form a codon which codes for one amino acid. Genetic Engineering  .  The sugar unit is ribose and RNA contains uracil instead of Thymine (T). Protein Synthesis  Protein synthesis in the cell involves transcription (transferring the instructions) and translation (decoding and synthesis).  The genetic code specifies which amino acid each codon codes for.  The type of polypeptide is determined by the nucleotide sequence. The other non-coding strand is called the DNA template.  Transcription is the transfer of genetic information from DNA to a short strand of ribonucleic acid (RNA). chromatin threads coil even more to form chromosomes in the nucleus.  During cell division. which is further coiled into a chromatin thread.  Sequences of amino acids are determined by sequences of nucleotides in RNA.Organisation of DNA in a cell  Each DNA is tightly coiled around protein molecules. The Gene and Genetic Code  A gene is a section of DNA (sequence of nucleotides) that contains information for the synthesis of a single polypeptide.

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