You are on page 1of 1

Nuclear Function: Who’s in Charge?

! The nucleus is typically called the “brains” of the cell. This somewhat misleading term may
obscure the actual nuclear functions within the cell.

! Review: The central dogma states that DNA acts as a template for RNA synthesis. RNA, in
turn, directs protein synthesis.

! The proteins which are synthesized comprise cell membranes, act as catalysts in
biochemical paths, and perform many other important roles in cell function.

Review: The central dogma states that DNA


directs RNA synthesis, which in turn directs
protein synthesis. DNA is contained in the
nucleus and serves as a template for RNA
synthesis. RNA leaves the nucleus via the
nuclear envelope (2). The RNA moves to the
ribosomal subunits (1) where it is translated
into a protein. One region of the nucleus, the
nucleolus (3), is the site for ribosomal RNA
synthesis.

Inside the nucleus, darkly stained chromatin


exist. Chromatin are chromosomes in an
uncondensed state. As chromatin, the DNA
and its associated proteins are not actively
synthesizing RNA. When the DNA is active,
the chromosomes become condensed and
more rod-like in appearance.

The illustration shows an active DNA double


helix serving as a template for an RNA strand.
The RNA strand leaves the nucleus via the
nuclear pores. It then moves to a ribosome
(composed of two ribosomal subunits) where
it directs protein synthesis.

www.thinkwell.com info@thinkwell.com
Copyright © 2000, Thinkwell Corp., All Rights Reserved. 031500bio065