A Nature Structural & Molecular Biology article published by Singer et al has provided a fascinating insight into the kinetics of RNA polymerase II during transcription. Using a combination of extremely elegant fluorescent microscopy-based assays and computer modelling, the group have provided the first measurements of RNA polymerase II kinetics in living cells. Among their findings are that only 8% the RNA polymerase/promoter interactions lead to mRNA synthesis and that the elongation speed of the polymerase is much faster than previously thought. This is a remarkable piece of experimental design and is well worth reading.
Working with RNA? What fun! Those little, nearly indestructible RNases are everywhere – on your skin and mucous membranes, in the water and (some of the) enzymes you use, on lab surfaces, even in airborne microbes! Here are 10 ways to keep the RNases at bay, and keep your precious samples safe:
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