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AP Biology: Nucleic Acids

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Catherine Yang

on 20 September 2013

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Transcript of AP Biology: Nucleic Acids

The Structure of DNA:
The Double Helix
How do the polynucleotides arrange themselves in the structure of DNA?
AP Biology:
Nucleic Acids

What are Nucleic Acids?
Nucleic acids are complex organic substances present in living cells, particularly DNA & RNA, whose molecules consist of a long chain of nucleotides.

They enable living organisms to reproduce their complex components from one generation to the next. (Genes = DNA)
The Structure of DNA:

The Function of Nucleic Acids
Stores and transmits genetic composition of plants & animals whenever a cell reproduces
DNA analysis is used to document hereditary background of organisms
Directs RNA synthesis
RNA directs production of polypeptides
Transcription (mRNA) & translation (tRNA) --> protein production
Conveys genetic instructions from nucleus to cytoplasm
of Nucleic Acids in Living Things
Proteins produced by DNA & RNA are used to:
Construct the cell
Act as enzymes in important reactions
Repair the cell
DNA is copied during meiosis & mitosis
Bottom line: DNA and RNA are essential for life
Catherine Yang, Jenny Choi, Olivia Omura, Helen Pfeifer
Nucleotide Monomers
Nucleotide Polymers
What makes up a nucleotide and how are they arranged together?
Nucleotide =

nitrogenous base
five-carbon sugar

phosphate group

Campbell Reece AP Edition Biology 8e

Nitrogenous Base Sequence
The sequence of bases along a DNA or RNA polymer is
unique for each gene
and provides very specific information to the cell!

The linear order of bases in a gene specifies the amino acid sequence (primary structure) of a protein
The Differences Between DNA and RNA
RNA = single polynucleotide chain

DNA = double helix w/ two polynucleotide chain
Arrangement also referred to as "antiparallel" which is like a "divided highway"
Two polynucleotides (strands) are held together by hydrogen bonds between paired bases and van der Waals interactions between stacked bases
Sugar-phosphate backbone outside of helix
Nitrogen bases paired in the interior of the helix
Adenine (A) <--> Thymine (T) and Guanine (G) <--> Cytosine (C)
Two strands of the double helix are complementary --> makes it possible to precisely copy genes responsible for inheritance
(Nucleoside =
nitrogenous base
five-carbon sugar
Five-carbon sugar
= ribose (RNA) or deoxyribose (DNA)
What's the difference? Deoxyribose has one fewer oxygen than RNA on the 2' carbon
Phosphate group
= added to 5' carbon of sugar

*Once phosphate group added, nucleoside has now become a nucleotide!
Answer the questions correctly and receive tasty compensation for your efforts!
Question One
What are 2 functions of DNA?
Question Two
What are the three components of nucleotide monomers?
Question Three
In DNA, what purine pairs with thymine?
Question Four
Question Five
Nucleotides are linked together to build a
polynucleotide chain
(RNA= 1 chain, DNA = 2)

Adjacent nucleotides are joined by
phosphodiester linkage
(phosphate group links the sugars of two nuecleotides)
In RNA, what purine pairs with uracil?
Nitrogenous bases
(CTU) and
- six-membered ring of carbon and nitrogen
Cytosine, thymine (DNA only), uracil (RNA only)
- six-membered ring fused to five-membered ring
Adenine, guanine
Which are larger - the purines or the pyrimidines?
Question Six
What are the two components of nucleosides?
Question Seven
What is the difference between ribose and deoxyribose?
Question Eight
What are adjacent nucleotides joined by?
Question Nine
Explain the difference between transcription and translation.
Question Ten
Fill in the blank: The two strands of DNA in a Double Helix are ______.
Full transcript