Navigation Links
Researchers develop model of 'near-optimal' genetic code
Date:8/28/2013

Researchers have created a model that may explain the complexities of the origins of life. Their work, which appears in the Journal of the Royal Society Interface, offers new insights into how RNA signaling likely developed into the modern "genetic code."

"Our model shows that today's genetic code probably resulted from a combination of selective forces and random chance," explained Justin Jee, a doctoral student at NYU School of Medicine and the paper's lead author.

The study's other co-authors included: Bud Mishra, who has appointments at NYU's Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences and the Sackler Institute of Graduate Biomedical Sciences at NYU School of Medicine; Andrew Sundstrom of the Courant Institute; and Steven Massey, an assistant professor in the University of Puerto Rico's Department of Biology.

The researchers sought to account for the composition of the genetic code, which allows proteins to be built from amino acids with high specificity based on information stored in a RNA or DNA genome. This translation process between the nucleic acids and amino acids is remarkably and mysteriously universal; the same code is shared in all organisms from bacteria to human beings. At the same time, the genetic code is nearly, but not completely, optimal in terms of how "good" it is at specifying particular amino acids for particular nucleic acid sequences.

Since the code's discovery in the 1960's, researchers have wondered: how is it that a near-optimal code became so universal?

To address this question, the researchers created a model of genetic code evolution in which multiple "translating" RNAs and "genomic" RNAs competed for survival. Specifically, the translating RNAs were able to link amino acids together based on information stored in genomic RNA, but with varying levels of specificity.

In running computer simulations of RNA interactions, they could see two phenomena. First, it was necessary for the translating and genomic RNAs to organize into cells, which aided the coordination of a code between the translating and genomic RNAs. Second, selective forces led a single set of translating RNAs to dominate the population. In other words, the emergence of a single, universal, near-optimal code was a natural outcome of the model. Even more remarkably, the results occurred under realistic conditionsspecifically, they held under parameters such as protein lengths and rates of mutation that likely existed in a natural RNA world.

"The most elegant ideas in this paper are rather obvious consequences of a well-studied model based on sender-receiver games," noted Mishra, the paper's senior author. "Yet the results are still very surprising because they suggest, for example, that proteins, the most prized molecules of biology, might have had their origin as undesirable toxic trash. Other studies based on phylogenomic analysis seem to be coming to similar conclusions independently."


'/>"/>

Contact: James Devitt
james.devitt@nyu.edu
212-998-6808
New York University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Researchers develop novel polymer to help oral medications reach the bloodstream
2. Researchers develop rapid, cost-effective early detection method for organ transplant injury
3. UTHealth, Swedish researchers uncover mystery in blot clotting disorder
4. Researchers develop software tool for cancer genomics
5. Rice, MD Anderson researchers win NIH grant to study protein networks
6. Researchers discover how inhibitory neurons behave during critical periods of learning
7. UCLA researchers invent portable device for common kidney tests
8. Harvard Stem Cell researchers create cells that line blood vessels
9. Researchers figure out why gold nanoparticles can penetrate cell walls
10. Finnish researchers develop quick test kit for detecting phenolic compounds in drinking water
11. BIDMC cardiovascular institute researchers will lead $4 million NIH grant to study micrornas
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:3/30/2017)... -- On April 6-7, 2017, Sequencing.com will host the world,s ... at Microsoft,s headquarters in Redmond, Washington ... health and wellness apps that provide a unique, personalized ... is the first hackathon for personal genomics and the ... the genomics, tech and health industries are sending teams ...
(Date:3/30/2017)... Trends, opportunities and forecast in this market ... (fingerprint, AFIS, iris recognition, facial recognition, hand geometry, vein ... use industry (government and law enforcement, commercial and retail, ... others), and by region ( North America ... Pacific , and the Rest of the World) ...
(Date:3/28/2017)... The report "Video Surveillance Market ... Storage Devices), Software (Video Analytics, VMS), and Service (VSaaS, ... to 2022", published by MarketsandMarkets, the market was valued ... to reach USD 75.64 Billion by 2022, at a ... year considered for the study is 2016 and the ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2017)... (PRWEB) , ... June 23, ... ... the launch of a redesigned, easier-to-navigate website for all six of their ... for physicians, nurses, dentists, pharmacists, physical and occupational therapists, and biotechnicians, DocCafe.com ...
(Date:6/22/2017)... ... June 22, 2017 , ... AESKU.GROUP, an ... Diagnostische Systeme & Technologien GmbH, thereby expanding its product portfolio to include allergy ... fever, urticaria, asthma, atopic eczema or a food allergy. Allergies are escalating to ...
(Date:6/22/2017)... MD (PRWEB) , ... June 22, 2017 , ... ... solutions provider, announced the release of Limfinity® version 6.5, a content-packed update to ... framework continue to gain a larger and more diverse base of customers among ...
(Date:6/20/2017)... 20, 2017  Kibow Biotech Inc., a pioneer in ... issuance of a new patent covering a unique method ... U.S. Patent and Trademark Office on May 23 rd ... Buzz of Bio award in 2014 in ... non-drug approaches to chronic disease. Renadylâ„¢, the first and ...
Breaking Biology Technology: