• Question: What is involved in the coding and decoding of genes?

    Asked by Mary C to Kellie on 23 Nov 2020.
    • Photo: Kellie Dean

      Kellie Dean answered on 23 Nov 2020:

      Wow – well this is a big question and there are multiple levels involved. Genes are made up of the molecule DNA, and in DNA there are different chemicals that have one letter designations of A, C, T and G. So this is like a secret code for the cell – the instructions – to tell the cell what to do, what things to make and how to behave. When I think of coding – then for me, I start thinking about how genes are converted into something more useable by the cell, like proteins. When we learn about this, we learned DNA makes RNA makes protein. This is called the central dogma in molecular biology. Genes are the instructions to make proteins which do a lot of jobs in cells. I hope my explanation might make a little bit of sense – I like drawing things, so I would draw this while explaining if I could!