1. Describe the process of transcription: unwinding, complimentary base pairing, separating.
Unwinding: the first step where a specific section of DNA in the double helix structure unwinds and unzips, created two independent strands of DNA that no longer has hydrogen bonds between the base pairs.
Complementary base pairing: when the RNA polymerase causes the new RNA nucleotides to move and follow along the singular DNA strand creating new pairs by forming hydrogen bonds.
Separating: the last step of transcription when the mRNA molecule is changed. The mRNA leaves the nucleus and enters the cytoplasm, where the DNA molecule forms back into it’s original double helix shape and rewinds, after the RNA leaves the DNA strand.
2. How did today’s activity do a good job of modelling the process of transcription? In what ways was our model inaccurate?
Having to create these models to demonstrate the steps of transcription was good because we were able to visualize each step and were able to get a clearer and comprehensive explanation of how each step goes to the next. Our models showed the beginning steps of the process easily, showing DNA unzipping and unwinding into two strands and also explained how the different enzymes needed to perform transcription. The model and activity was very accurate and even though we weren’t able to show the last step of transcription where mRNA leaves the nucleus and moves into the cytoplasm, I gained enough understanding about a topic that I struggled with earlier in the unit, and was able to understand transcription easier.
3. Describe the process of translation: initiation, elongation, and termination.
Initiation: mRNA is held by the ribosome. It reads the “start” codon (AUG) and is read by the P site where the matching tRNA pairs it with an amino acid.