But that is exactly what has recently been accomplished, and it answers an obvious question: Does the RNA polymerase enzyme which transcribes DNA into RNA work by translating a single base unit at a time, or does it operate in batches of several base units? It seems that we now have the answer:
Ultra-sensitive microscope reveals DNA processes
“For years, people have known that RNA is made up one base at a time,” Block [researcher who co-designed the experimental equipment] says. “But that has left open the question of whether the RNAP enzyme actually climbs up the DNA ladder one rung at a time, or does it move instead in chunks – for example, does it add three bases, then jump along and add another three bases.
And the answer is?
“The RNAP climbs the DNA ladder one base pair at a time – that is probably the right answer,” he says.
Labels: molecular biology
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