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The Collaborative International Dictionary

macromolecule \mac`ro*mol"e*cule\, n. (Chem., Biochem.) A very large molecule, especially a polymer having from hundreds to many thousands of atoms, such as DNA, RNA, protein, polysaccharide, polyethylene, polycarbonate, etc.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1948, abbreviation of ribonucleic acid (see ribonucleic).


Ribonucleic acid (RNA) is a polymeric molecule implicated in various biological roles in coding, decoding, regulation, and expression of genes. RNA and DNA are nucleic acids, and, along with proteins and carbohydrates, constitute the three major macromolecules essential for all known forms of life. Like DNA, RNA is assembled as a chain of nucleotides, but unlike DNA it is more often found in nature as a single-strand folded onto itself, rather than a paired double-strand. Cellular organisms use messenger RNA (mRNA) to convey genetic information (using the letters G, U, A, and C to denote the nitrogenous bases guanine, uracil, adenine, and cytosine) that directs synthesis of specific proteins. Many viruses encode their genetic information using an RNA genome.

Some RNA molecules play an active role within cells by catalyzing biological reactions, controlling gene expression, or sensing and communicating responses to cellular signals. One of these active processes is protein synthesis, a universal function wherein mRNA molecules direct the assembly of proteins on ribosomes. This process uses transfer RNA (tRNA) molecules to deliver amino acids to the ribosome, where ribosomal RNA (rRNA) then links amino acids together to form proteins.

RNA (disambiguation)

RNA stands for ribonucleic acid, a biological macromolecule.

RNA may also refer to:

  • RNA (journal), a scientific journal
  • Religion Newswriters Association
  • Republic of New Afrika, a black nationalist community and political lobby group
  • Rochester Numismatic Association
  • Romantic Novelists' Association
  • The Royal National Agricultural and Industrial Association of Queensland, organiser of the Ekka
  • Royal Nepalese Army
  • Royal Nepal Airlines
  • Radio Nacional de Angola, Angola National Radio
  • Ripley and New Albany Railroad, a Mississippi shortline railroad
  • Royal Neighbors of America, an American fraternal order
  • RNA Showgrounds, Brisbane
RNA (journal)

RNA is a monthly peer-reviewed scientific journal that covers research on all aspects of RNA molecules, including their structures, metabolism, functions, and evolution. The journal was established in 1995 and originally published by Cambridge University Press. Since 2003 it is published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press on behalf of the RNA Society. The editor-in-chief is Timothy W. Nilsen ( Case Western Reserve University).

Usage examples of "rna".

These drugs creep through the porins deep inside the cytoplasm and lock onto the various vulnerable sites in the RNA protein factories.

The bizarre part was that the infectious particles are unique, consisting of only protein and containing no DNA or RNA, a proposition so scientifically heretical that the study of these particles and the diseases they produce had already generated Nobel Prizes for medicine in two different years.

PCR was performed on the samples using primers specific for ribosomal RNA, and the products were sequenced, revealing a magnetotactic sequence similar to Terran marine methanogens.

The lab team spliced my sequencing RNA into the ferredoxin nodes, replicating my neuronic structure.

Dicken saw that he had isolated a recombined variety of unencapsulated RNA virus from the blood and sputum of all the afflicted children, in titers sufficient to suggest massive infection.

The four codons for threonine in their RNA coding are ACU, ACC, ACA, and ACG.

There are beginning to be very large databases of RNA chips that have expression data for tens of thousands of genes including normal cells, diseased cells, untreated and treated normal and diseased cells.

Only when messenger RNA is made during a process called transcription are the exons spliced together.

For their part, the Futurists want to change the present through the future, to go into the future and bring back its completion, in the form of restored RNA cells, which is congruent with their belief that the past is the past and all that matters is that which is yet to come, that which still has the hope of existence.

Its vital RNA lacks the proofreading and editing skills which longer, more stable genomes such as ours have developed.

In the second approach, described as interventive, one injects an antibiotic inhibitor of RNA or protein synthesis, trains the animal and asks if it can still remember the task.

Most neurobiologists believe that the neurons are the active elements in brain function, although there is evidence that some specific memories and other cognitive functions may be contained in particular molecules in the brain, such as RNA or small proteins.

During the decade of the 1950s he had painstakingly used the famed Swedish micro-methods to measure the oxygen utilization and the DNA, RNA and protein composition of such isolated cells, comparing the biochemistry of the neurons with that of their surrounding glia.

Sure enough, he claimed, these experiences altered the composition of the RNA and protein of the neurons, but not the glia, that he was studying.

Ott, J and Matthies, H-J Some effects of RNA precursors on development and maintenance of long-term memory: hippocampal and cortical pre- and posttraining application of RNA precursors.