Thursday, January 9, 2014

Self-sustained Replication of an RNA Enzyme

Now I have to remember all the places in lecture I said I would post a link to the blog. Here's the first I remembered, a 2009 paper in Science

Self-sustained Replication of an RNA Enzyme
RNA enzymes have been made to undergo self-sustained replication in the absence of proteins, providing the basis for an artificial genetic system.
An RNA enzyme that catalyzes the RNA-templated joining of RNA was converted to a format whereby two enzymes catalyze each other’s synthesis from a total of four component substrates. These cross-replicating RNA enzymes were optimized so that they can undergo self-sustained exponential amplification at a constant temperature and in the absence of proteins or other biological materials. Amplification occurs with a doubling time of about one hour, and can be continued indefinitely. 

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