Nucleic acids are first discovered by Friedrich Miescher in 1869. from semen of salmon. He found them in nucleus, which is the reason they are called “nuclein”. A few years later, he separated the protein from this unknown acidic structure from the rest of the components. As the rest was acidic part, he called them “nucleic acids”. They can be found in nucleus the most, but also in the cytoplasm. In 1928. Frederick Griffith made an experiment with DNA where he discovered the process of information being transferred and this kind of communication is “Transformation”. This experiment that he conducted with mice was also confirmed by a couple of other scientists, such as Avery, McLeod and McCarty,Hershey and Chase.
So, What Are Nucleic Acids Really?
Nucleic acids are the part of every living organism on the planet, thus, they are very important for the worlds evolution and life in general. They are a large polymer structures which can be separated into small sections and pieces. There are two types of nucleic acid: DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) and RNA (ribonucleic acid). They have elements like C, N, O, H and P. They are built inside the chromosome inside the cell and are tied with special bounds. They have three main parts, which are sugar, phosphate and molecule of nucleotide base. There are two types of nucleotide base which are purine and pyrimidine nucleotide base. Purine has Guanine and Adenosine bases and pyrimidine has Cytosine, Thymine and Uracil. With this five nucleotide bases, the nucleic acids are made out of millions of those which are sorted in specific order in the line and it is code for protein synthesis. Sugar in the molecule of DNA and RNA are a bit different, since deoxyribonucleic acid contains pentose sugar deoxyribose, and ribonucleic acid has another sugar called ribose. The acidic character of the nucleic acid’s structure comes from the phosphoric part of the molecule.
DNA is present in every nucleus and in a various living organisms. DNA consists out of two chains binned together. This two chains called polynucleotide chains have unique helix structure where they are around each other in opposite way and they are complementary to each other. DNA has 4 types of nucleotide bases: Cytosine, Guanine, Adenine and Thymine. They are connected in T-A, C-G way. This line of codes written in a -T-A-C-A-A-G-T-G- has its own protein structure which is made throughout the process of replication, transcription and translation. Even the small changes from one base it changes the whole structure of the protein, meaning it can make mutations and changing the look and the function of the protein which is being produced. According to that, there are a lot of mechanisms for cell protection from mutations since it can happen in all kind of stages during synthesis. So, deoxyribose with nucleotide bases and phosphor. In organisms called eukaryotes it’s inside the nucleus, and for other shapes of genome information, inside prokaryotes, it is stored inside cytoplasm. There is also DNA in mitochondria, which is conducted through mother’s genes to child.
From DNA to RNA an information is being trancripted into RNA code for protein synthesis. Translation happens next with creating one strand of complementary DNA which is for other duplicated DNA strand. They merge together and make one new piece of genetic information. The difference between the DNA and RNA is in the sugar, here it is ribose. It is not a double helix like DNA structure and it can be found in nucleus, ribosome and mitochondria. There are three types of RNA: rRNA which is the ribosomal one, tRNA or the transport RNA and mRNA that stands for messenger RNA. rRNA nucleic acid is found in ribosome in cytoplasm of the cell and its job is to direct the mRNA translation to protein. tRNA is responsible for bringing the amino acids into ribosome to correspond each codon of rRNA (three-pair nucleotide). The last one, mRNA is for transportation of the genetic code from nucleus to the cytoplasm inside the cell, were is used for protein creation.
This artificial nucleic acids are made by human in the laboratories for scientific research and it is done by molecular genetics experts for creating analogues for the original natural DNA and RNA. Its synthesis helps people discover more about human genome.
Mutations Of Nucleic Acids And Consequences
Because of so many delicate processes during DNA and RNA making, the key to production is error-free synthesis. Any kind of changes inside even the smallest part of code can change entire product, protein. There are structural and numerous mutations which can lead to many diseases and more further, to death.
- Cancer – mutation of the specific genes are known to cause some illness that is connected to that gene transcription. Some of the cancers have unique genes that can be seen in patients who suffer from that illness, such as breast cancer which is linked with BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes. The same goes for ovary cancer, and there are some genes like CEA, AFP, and other which are related to other types of cancers.
- Cystic fibrosis – autosomal recessive state that causes cyst inside pancreas and attacks secretory glands and mucus.
- Down syndrome – a disease which is caused by monosomal loss of 21. chromosome, that leads to slower development, lower intelligence level, heart and other organ problems.
- Cri-du-chat syndrome – which is caused by loss of the 5th chromosome and the main characteristic in this disease is visible at the birth time which is the baby’s cry which sounds like cat.
Diet With Nucleic Acid Rich Ingredients
Nucleic acid can be found in animal and plant food. Fish is very rich with nucleic acids, especially the sardine, salmon and tuna. Fruit can have NC and also natural sugars and fibers which are great for diet. Some fruits are mango, pear, apples and other. Plants are also some nuts, clovers and lentils which are also filled with nucleic acids.