What is mRNA synthesis?

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What is mRNA synthesis?

The synthesis of mRNA, or messenger RNA, (ribonucleic acid), is called transcription.  This process occurs inside cells for the purpose of building proteins that are essential for the body’s energy and metabolic requirements. mRNAs are substances that are actually copies of DNA which contain all of the genetic information.  They are called “messengers” because of their function in terms of transporting the copied genetic information from the nucleus to the other parts of the cell in order to build proteins. The major difference between DNA synthesis and mRNA synthesis is that the former results in two-strand copies while the latter involves only one strand or copy of the genetic material.

Transcription, or mRNA synthesis, basically starts with setting DNA as the master copy.  Synthesis will only start if the enzyme called RNA polymerase is present.  Upon the action of this enzyme, the genetically-coiled DNA will uncoil and provide one if its strands as the master copy for replication.  After the replication of the DNA strand, messenger RNA is now formed, and this contains a copy of the genetic material contained in the original DNA.  This single-stranded mRNA will then proceed to the other parts of the cell to continue with the protein buildup or creation.  Depending on the type of cell, mRNA may go to the cytoplasm or endoplasmic reticulum for further processing.  In the case of human cells, the site for mRNA processing is in the endoplasmic reticulum.  In this part of the cell, mRNA will be processed and become amino acids or proteins.

The whole mRNA synthesis or process is short-lived.  The beginning of the process is the actual transcription or copying of the DNA, and the next parts involve the re-processing of mRNA into proteins or amino acids.  Not all mRNA will be used up, though, for protein buildup.  Some excess supplies of this substance will eventually decay or degrade.

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