In English | En español
Questions About Cancer? 1-800-4-CANCER

Understanding Cancer Series

< Back to Main
  • Posted: 01/28/2005
  • Reviewed: 09/01/2006

Page Options

  • Print This Page
  • Print This Document
  • View Entire Document
  • Email This Document
  • View/Print PDF
  • View/Print PowerPoint

Slide 8


Lesson 2: Genes Express mRNA

< Previous SectionNext Section >

When a gene expresses itself, it "switches on" to produce a protein. The gene does so by first directing the synthesis of an intermediary molecule called messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA). To transfer a gene's information from DNA to mRNA, base pairing is used. However, there is one change. RNA uses a new rule: A matches only with U, and C only with G. So the base sequence of an mRNA molecule resembles that of the DNA molecule from which it was copied, except the base U appears anywhere the base T would appear in DNA.

Lesson 2: Genes Express mRNA