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Polynucleotides:

The DNA Helix

JoVE 10784

Deoxyribonucleic acid, or DNA, is the genetic material responsible for passing traits from generation to generation in all organisms and most viruses. DNA is composed of two strands of nucleotides that wind around each other to form a double helix. The discovery of the structure of DNA occurred incrementally over nearly a century, representing one of the most famous and captivating stories in the history of science. Each strand of DNA consists of subunits called nucleotides that contain the sugar deoxyribose, a phosphate group, and one of four nitrogen-containing bases: adenine (A), guanine (G), cytosine (C), and thymine (T). Adenine and guanine are members of a larger class of chemicals called purines that all contain two-ringed structures. Cytosine and thymine belong to a group of single-ringed structures called pyrimidines. Adjacent nucleotides in the same strand are covalently linked by phosphodiester bonds. The two strands of nucleotides are held together by hydrogen bonds, in which the adenines in one strand pair with thymines at the same position in the other strand, and the cytosines in one strand pair with guanines in the same position in the other strand. This hydrogen bonding is made possible by the antiparallel arrangement of the two DNA strands, in which the 5’ and 3’ ends of the strands are oriented in opposite directions. Withou

 Core: Biology

Phosphodiester Linkages

JoVE 10685

Phosphodiester linkage is created when a phosphoric acid molecule (H3PO4) is linked with two hydroxyl groups (–OH) of two other molecules, forming two ester bonds and removing two water molecules. Phosphodiester linkage is commonly found in nucleic acids (DNA and RNA) and plays a critical role in their structure and function.

DNA and RNA are polynucleotides, or long chains of nucleotides, linked together. Nucleotides are composed of a nitrogen base (adenine, guanine, thymine, cytosine, or uracil), a pentose sugar and a phosphate molecule (PO 3−4). In a polynucleotide chain, nucleotides are linked together by phosphodiester bonds. A phosphodiester bond occurs when phosphate forms two ester bonds. The first ester bond already exists between the phosphate group and the sugar of a nucleotide. The second ester bond is formed by reacting to a hydroxyl group (–OH) in a second molecule. Each formation of an ester bond removes a water molecule. Inside the cell, a polynucleotide is built from free nucleotides that have three phosphate groups attached to the 5o carbon of their sugar. These nucleotides are thus called nucleotide triphosphates. During the formation of phosphodiester bonds, two phosphates are lost, leaving the nucleotide with one phosphate group that is attached to t

 Core: Biology

What are Nucleic Acids?

JoVE 10684

Nucleic acids are long chains of nucleotides linked together by phosphodiester bonds. There are two types of nucleic acids: deoxyribonucleic acid, or DNA, and ribonucleic acid, or RNA. Nucleotides in both DNA and RNA are made up of a sugar, a nitrogen base, and a phosphate molecule.

A cell’s hereditary material is comprised of nucleic acids, which enable living organisms to pass on genetic information from one generation to next. There are two types of nucleic acids: deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA). DNA and RNA differ very slightly in their chemical composition, yet play entirely different biological roles. Chemically, nucleic acids are polynucleotides—chains of nucleotides. A nucleotide is composed of three components: a pentose sugar, a nitrogen base, and a phosphate group. The sugar and the base together form a nucleoside. Hence, a nucleotide is sometimes referred to as a nucleoside monophosphate. Each of the three components of a nucleotide plays a key role in the overall assembly of nucleic acids. As the name suggests, a pentose sugar has five carbon atoms, which are labeled 1o, 2o, 3o, 4o, and 5o. The pentose sugar in RNA is ribose, meaning the 2o carbon carries a hydroxyl group. The sugar in DNA is deoxyribose, meaning the 2o

 Core: Biology

Agrobacterium-Mediated Immature Embryo Transformation of Recalcitrant Maize Inbred Lines Using Morphogenic Genes

1Department of Agronomy, Iowa State University, 2Department of Applied Science and Technology, Corteva Agriscience, 3Crop Bioengineering Center, Iowa State University, 4Interdepartmental Plant Biology Major, Iowa State University, 5Interdepartmental Genetics and Genomics Major, Iowa State University

JoVE 60782

 Biology
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