Although "less than 2% of the human genome is translated into protein, yet more than 40% of the genome is thought to be transcribed into RNA." This non-coding RNA has some "truly remarkable" characteristics: "microRNAs, short interfering (si)RNAs, repeat-associated RNAs and germline-specific RNAs) and of new members of existing classes (for example, small nucleolar (sno)RNAs)".
A recent review paper is concerned with the "biogenesis, trafficking and mechanisms of action of small nuclear and small nucleolar ribonucleoproteins (RNPs)." The authors refer to the "remarkable complexity" of these RNP complexes, pointers to which are as follows:
"ncRNAs have emerged as key trans-acting regulators of diverse cellular activities in all three domains of life."
"Ongoing studies of snRNPs and snoRNPs have revealed unexpectedly elaborate biogenesis pathways."
"ncRNAs often require partner proteins that provide various essential functions in addition to the obvious associated enzymatic activities."
"A common principle in the biogenesis of both snRNPs and snoRNPs is the assembly of stable, but inactive, pre-RNPs that require maturation at locations distinct from the functional sites."
It used to be said that DNA coding for protein was the only thing that mattered in the genome, and all else was lumped under the descriptor "Junk DNA". But not now! Is the term "Junk DNA" best understood as an outdated concept emerging from a very inadequate view of the genome? But even more important, with all this complexity emerging from DNA that does not code for protein, what does this imply for our understanding of living things? A friend writes: "Probability decreases EXPONENTIALLY as complexity increases. When do we reach an increase that makes the Darwinian hypothesis completely incredible? Seems like we must be there now."
Non-coding RNAs: lessons from the small nuclear and small nucleolar RNAs
A. Gregory Matera, Rebecca M. Terns and Michael P. Terns
Nature Reviews Molecular Cell Biology, 8, 209-220 (March 2007) | doi:10.1038/nrm2124
Abstract: Recent advances have fuelled rapid growth in our appreciation of the tremendous number, diversity and biological importance of non-coding (nc)RNAs. Because ncRNAs typically function as ribonucleoprotein (RNP) complexes and not as naked RNAs, understanding their biogenesis is crucial to comprehending their regulation and function. The small nuclear and small nucleolar RNPs are two well studied classes of ncRNPs with elaborate assembly and trafficking pathways that provide paradigms for understanding the biogenesis of other ncRNPs.
Summary of paper here.
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Evolution has become a favorite topic of the news media recently, but for some reason, they never seem to get the story straight. The staff at Discovery Institute's Center for Science and Culture started this Blog to set the record straight and make sure you knew "the rest of the story".
A blogger from New England offers his intelligent reasoning.
We are a group of individuals, coming from diverse backgrounds and not speaking for any organization, who have found common ground around teleological concepts, including intelligent design. We think these concepts have real potential to generate insights about our reality that are being drowned out by political advocacy from both sides. We hope this blog will provide a small voice that helps rectify this situation.
Website dedicated to comparing scenes from the "Inherit the Wind" movie with factual information from actual Scopes Trial. View 37 clips from the movie and decide for yourself if this movie is more fact or fiction.
Don Cicchetti blogs on: Culture, Music, Faith, Intelligent Design, Guitar, Audio
Australian biologist Stephen E. Jones maintains one of the best origins "quote" databases around. He is meticulous about accuracy and working from original sources.
Most guys going through midlife crisis buy a convertible. Austrialian Stephen E. Jones went back to college to get a biology degree and is now a proponent of ID and common ancestry.
Complete zipped downloadable pdf copy of David Stove's devastating, and yet hard-to-find, critique of neo-Darwinism entitled "Darwinian Fairytales"
Intelligent Design The Future is a multiple contributor weblog whose participants include the nation's leading design scientists and theorists: biochemist Michael Behe, mathematician William Dembski, astronomer Guillermo Gonzalez, philosophers of science Stephen Meyer, and Jay Richards, philosopher of biology Paul Nelson, molecular biologist Jonathan Wells, and science writer Jonathan Witt. Posts will focus primarily on the intellectual issues at stake in the debate over intelligent design, rather than its implications for education or public policy.
A Philosopher's Journey: Political and cultural reflections of John Mark N. Reynolds. Dr. Reynolds is Director of the Torrey Honors Institute at