7
Aug

What is DNA and How Does it Work?


Stated Clearly presents: what is DNA and how does it work DNA also known as deoxyribonucleic
acid is a molecule it’s a bunch of atoms stuck together In the case of DNA, these adoms
combined to form the shape of a long spiraling ladder sort of like this one here if you ever studied biology or watched the
movie Jurassic Park, you probably heard that DNA acts as a blueprint or
recipe for living thing but how? how on earth can a mere molecule act as a
blueprint for something as complex and wonderful as a tree a dog or a dinosaur Yelp! to help answer that question let’s first take a quick look at amino
acids amino acids are tiny little chemicals
inside our bodies that are so important they’re often referred to as the
building blocks of life there’s about twenty different kinds
each with their own unique shape the cool thing about them is they can be
attached to each other kind of like Legos to produce an endless variety of
larger particles particles called proteins amino acids make up proteins proteins along with other chemicals
combined to form living cells cells make up tissues tissues make up organs and organs when they’re all put together and
functioning of course combined to form living creatures like
you and me these proteins that make up our bodies
and keep in mind there’s millions of different kinds of proteins they each have to be formed in the
perfect shape in order to function if they are the wrong shape they usually
won’t work that’s where DNA comes in DNA does a lot of interesting things some of which we don’t fully understand but one of its main and most well
understood functions is to tell amino acids how to line up and form themselves into
the perfect protein shapes in theory if the right proteins are built at the
right time and in the right place everything else from cells to organs to
entire creatures will come out just fine this here is a simplified model of
DNA it shows us that the steps of the ladder are made up of four different kinds of
chemicals shown here by different colors and letters if you look at just one half of the
molecule you can read this chemical sequence or
genetic code from top to bottom sort of like a book a single strand of DNA is extremely long millions of letters long it spends most of its life coiled up
like a noodle living inside the nucleus or the centerpiece of a cell amino acids however live outside the
nucleus in what’s called the cytoplasm to help DNA interact with the
cytoplasm and convert those amino acids into proteins special chemicals inside the nucleus
make partial copies of the DNA code these partial copies called RNA look a lot like DNA but they’re
shorter of course and they’re missing one of their sides their small shape and size allows them to fit through tiny pores in the nucleus out to the cytoplasm and into the mouth
of another particle called a ribosome ribosomes are protein building machines they the RNA code three
letters at a time suck amino acids out of their
surroundings stick them together in a chain according to the genetic code as a chain grows it bends, folds, and sticks to itself to form a perfectly shaped protein every three letters of the RNA code tell the ribosome which of the twenty
different kinds of amino acids should be added next for example CAA tells the ribosome to grab a glutamine AGU tells it to grab a serine and so on once a protein is built it then goes on
to do a number of different things, one of which could be to help form of brand new cell so to answer the original question what is DNA? DNA is a molecular blueprint for a
living thing how does it work? DNA creates RNA RNA creates protein proteins go on to form life this entire process as complicated, sophisticated and magical as it might seem is entirely based in chemistry it can be studied it can be understood i’m Jon Perry and that’s DNA Stated Clearly thanks for watching share with friends on
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you can post those in the comments section Learn more about DNA at StatedClearly.com www.StatedClearly.com til next time stay curious

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