Central Dogma of Molecular Biology

643 words | 3 page(s)

The Central Dogma of molecular biology is basically a mechanism for describing the flow of information from the sequence of the gene to proteins. In other words, the Central Dogma describes the flow of information from DNA to RNA and finally to the protein. There is essentially 2 processes in the Central Dogma: transcription and translation. When DNA is copied into an RNA copy, the process is called transcription. Then, the RNA is synthesized into a protein in a process we call translation. When people make remarks about your physical appearance (your eyes, your height, etc.), you can thank the central dogma for that. The central dogma of biology makes all of this possible by providing a way for our DNA to become character traits that we show all the time (“The classic view,” 2007). The central dogma includes both transcription and translation, and it is imperative that any biologist knows these two essential processes. These processes are very critical in determining how we act, look, and behave. The idea behind genes and the function of them can be seen when studying both of these processes. While the idea of the central dogma has been around for a long time, it has undergone some changes as we’ve learned more. These changes have a lot to do with the two processes which will be described in the future.

When DNA is copied into an RNA copy, the process is called transcription, and this is the first process in the gene expression sequence that is part of the central dogma. The enzymes that make transcription possible is RNA polymerases. These enzymes are seen to be nucleotides which form RNA strands. These RNA strands are copes of the DNA strand, and are called templates. Transcription has three primary stages: initiation, elongation, and termination. The primary thing to remember, however, about transcription is that it is about copying and rewriting. Now RNA polymerase builds the RNA strand in a 5’ to 3’ direction, and it adds a new nucleotide to the 3’ end. The first stage, initiation, is when the RNA polymerase binds to the promoter of the gene. RNA polymerase separates each DNA strand so that it’s single stranded. By separating the strands, there is then a suitable template for transcription. The second stage is elongation, and this is when the template strand is used to create the coding strand where the RNA polymerase does its job. Step three is termination, where the transcript is released from the enzyme. It’s simply a signal and an action that the transcription process is done.

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Translation is when the mRna sequence is translated into an amino acid sequence which creates a protein. The mRna is decoded in order to build a protein which contains an amino acid sequence. The cell reads messenger RNA and then uses it to build the protein, and this causes an mRna to encode a polypeptide. A polypeptide is basically a sequence, or chain, of amino acids. In messenger RNA, the way in which a polypeptide is built is when RNA nucleotides -A, U, C, G – are deciphered and grouped into three. Now these groups are called codons and they are deciphered in order to help read an amino acid so that these proteins can be identified. The start codon, AUG, is used to start protein construction. And the stop codons, UAA, UAG, and UGA, are used to signal the completion of a polypeptide chain. The stop codon is just a codon to tell the gene that the protein is done and ready to be transported and processed. This is essentially what the central dogma is.

  • Molecular Biology Review. (2007). Retrieved November 25, 2017, from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/Class/MLACourse/Modules/MolBioReview/central_dogma.html
  • Overview of transcription (article). (n.d.). Retrieved November 25, 2017, from https://www.khanacademy.org/science/biology/gene-expression-central-dogma/transcription-of-dna-into-rna/a/overview-of-transcription

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