Are you interested in the field of molecular biology? Do you have a strong interest in biology and want to deepen your understanding of it? Perhaps you are interested in the deeper mechanisms of genetics and how they lead to different traits or characteristics. Either way, if so, this article will be beneficial to you. Understanding molecular biology requires extensive knowledge of genetics, but also involves a great deal more. Reading this article will give you everything you need to know about molecular biology and how it is used by biologists today.
What is Molecular Biology?
Molecular biology is the study of biological organisms at the molecular level, including the biochemistry of cells. Molecular biology also typically involves the sequencing of DNA and RNA and the study of mutations and regulation of gene expression. Molecular biologists often work in research and biotechnology companies, universities, or medical research institutes. Molecular biologists conduct experiments to understand the function of genes and how the genetic code is translated into proteins, which are used in all aspects of cellular function.
Importance of Molecular Biology
It is the knowledge of cellular structure that gives insight into how our bodies function, how they make energy, and how they repair themselves when they become injured or infected. Scientists who work in this field are studying the details of how our genetic material, DNA, is copied and synthesized into proteins. These proteins are the workhorses of our cells, carrying out all the functions of our bodies from the beating of our hearts to the production of insulin in our pancreas. All of this is dependent on the successful flow of information from the DNA in the cell nucleus to the protein-making machinery in the cytoplasm.
Steps to perform molecular biology
- DNA extraction - This involves the removal of DNA from the cells or tissues being studied. - PCR amplification - This is a method by which cells can be replicated to make more DNA.
- DNA sequencing - A technique used to determine the order of nucleotides in a given DNA molecule.
- DNA transcription - This is the process of copying DNA into RNA molecules.
- RNA translation - This is the process by which RNA molecules are read to make proteins
- Protein synthesis - This is the process by which proteins are made.
- Summary - The molecular biologist may use any or all of these techniques in their work.
How Does Molecular Biology Help Advance Science?
Molecular biologists study the molecules found in living organisms, mainly DNA and RNA. They use this information to understand the function of various biological systems. This helps advance many branches of science, including medicine, agriculture, and environmental science. This field will help in the development of new medicines and treatments for diseases. This is because it will allow scientists to understand the underlying cause of these diseases and design new drugs that target these specific causes. Molecular biology may advance other areas of science, such as biotechnology, food science and genetics.
Importance of DNA in Molecular Biology
DNA is the molecule that stores information in living organisms. Understanding the structure and function of DNA is therefore central to understanding how living organisms function. Biologists have known the chemical formula for DNA since 1953 when James Watson and Francis Crick deduced its structure by studying the X-ray diffraction patterns of DNA fibers. DNA is made up of four chemical subunits called nucleotides. The nucleotides in DNA are cytosine (C), guanine (G), thymine (T), and adenine (A). The sequence of these nucleotides in DNA molecules determines the sequence of amino acids in proteins, which carry out all of the functions of living organisms.
Types of DNA used in Molecular Biology
There are several types of DNA used in molecular biology. The most commonly used are DNA plasmids, genomic DNA, cDNA, synthetic DNA, and mRNA. DNA plasmids are isolated pieces of DNA that are present inside cells. The DNA found in the nucleus of cells is called genomic DNA, and the DNA found outside of the nucleus is called cDNA. Synthetic DNA is produced by scientists in a laboratory. mRNA is the intermediate molecule formed in the process of making proteins from DNA.
Molecular biology is the study of the molecules in living organisms. It is the study of the structure and function of DNA, which is the molecule that stores information in living organisms. DNA is made up of four chemical subunits called nucleotides. The sequence of these nucleotides in DNA molecules determines the sequence of amino acids in proteins, which carry out all of the functions of living organisms. There are several types of DNA used in molecular biology. The most commonly used are DNA plasmids, genomic DNA, cDNA, synthetic DNA, and mRNA. Molecular biologists study the structure and function of these molecules in living organisms.