|Stephen G. Saupe - Biology Department, College of St. Benedict/St. John's University, Collegeville, MN 56321; (320) 363-2782; firstname.lastname@example.org|
Gink & Go in the Kitchen (a look at the Central Dogma)
Setting: Go is in the dormitory kitchen making brownies. Gink enters.
|Gink:||Hey Go, whazzup?|
|Go:||I’m making some brownies for a treat after I finish studying biology. Isn't transcription and translation really cool?|
|Gink:||I hate that stuff. But I loved Saupe’s barbecued cat analogy. He finally said something intelligent.|
|Go:||Well, I thought it was awful and tasteless.|
|Gink:||Good pun dude. You have to admit that it makes sense if you think of the nucleus as a reference library where none of the books are allowed to circulate.|
|Go:||Right. And the books are analogous to the hereditary information; the DNA.|
|Gink:||So if we need a recipe for something like, say barbequed cat, then we have to go to the shelves and find the “Dead Cat Cookbook.”|
|Go:||But unfortunately we can’t this book out of the library.|
|Gink:||We could always razor blade the recipe out of the book; the librarians would never know.|
|Go:||Crikey – that’s a bigger crime than one of Saupe’s lectures! Don’t ever, ever….|
|Gink:||Relax, you’re shorts are a little too tight. I’m kidding. I would never do that.|
|Go:||Phew.….anyway, then we would make a photocopy of the recipe.|
|Gink:||Yeah, and that’s just like process of transcription.|
|Go:||Only this photocopy of the original DNA is now messenger RNA.|
|Gink:||We can then take the recipe back to our kitchen to whip up a tasty feline treat.|
|Go:||Um, right. Well, the kitchen is analogous to the ribosome where proteins are made.|
|Gink:||And that’s called translation. I don’t know why they have to make up new terms for something as simple as saying, protein synthesis.|
|Go:||Good point. But the important thing is we’ve now modeled the Central Dogma.|
|Gink:||I’ve never heard of that breed of dog…is it like a Wiener Dogma?|
|Go:||No bozo – you know that Francis Crick first suggested this model to explain how DNA codes for proteins.|
|Gink:||Yeah, yeah. DNA gets transcribed in the nucleus to RNA which, in turn, gets translated at the ribosomes to make proteins.|
|Go:||Marvelous….don't you like the word 'marvelous'? Now let's talk about the tasty details of how transcription and translation occur.|
|Gink:||Spare me, dude…..just gimme a couple of those brownies so I can go “Dance with the Stars!”|
Exercises: Answer the following questions when you complete the dialog.
Define: transcription, translation and replication
Indicate where in the cell each process occurs.
What is the Central Dogma?
How does the genotype relate to the phenotype?
Can DNA be a product of the Central Dogma? Can RNA be a product? protein?
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Last updated: December 05, 2006
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