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Lecture 15

BCH2011: Textbook summary - Lecture 15

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Monash University

LECTURE 15: Transfer RNA: Hoagland and Zamecnik found that amino acids were ‘activated’ when incubated with ATP and that cytosolic fraction of liver cells. The amino acids became attached to a head-stable soluble RNA, tRNA, to form aminoacyl-tRNAs. The enzymes that catalyse this process are the aminocyl-tRNA synthetases. tRNAs Have Characteristic Structural Features: Two of the arms of a tRNA are critical for its adaptor function. The amino acid arm can carry a specific amino acid esterified by its carboxyl group to the 2’- or 3’- hydroxyl group of the A residue at the 3’ end of the tRNA. The anticodon arm contains the anticodon. The other major arms are the D arm, which contains the unusual nucleotide dohydrouridine (D), and the TC arm, which contains ribothymidine (T). The D and TC arms contribute important interactions for the overall folding of tRNA molecules, and the TC arm interacts with the large subunit rRNA. General Cloverleaf Secondary Structure of tRNAs: The large dots on the backbone represent nucleotide residues; the blue lines represent base pairs. Characteristic and/or invariant residues common to all tRNAs are shaded in light red. Transfer RNAs vary in length from 73-93 nucleotides. Extra nucleotides occur in the extra arm or in the D arm. At the end of the anticodon arm is the anticodon loop, which always contains seven unpaired nucleotides. The D arm contains two or three D residues, depending on the tRNA. In some tRNAs, the D arm has only three H-bonded base pairs. Refer to ;tRNA structure’ picture in lecture notes Anticodon: Transfer RNAs base-pair with mRNA codons at a three-base sequence on the tRNA called the anticodon. The first base pair of the codon in mRNA (read in the 5’  3’ direction) pairs with the third base of th
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