Okay, let the fun begin. Let’s get a real world, real time, computer animation demonstration of how the chemical arrangement of the DNA nucleotides leads to the production of the proteins that make up you, me and every other living organism on the planet.
In short, let’s go on a virtual tour of DNA.
Now, before we begin – just note that there is a lot of information in the following videos. Don’t think that you have to understand it all at once. Take your time – just make sure that when you are done you have a solid grasp of how this all works (although you don’t need to worry so much about the details, more so on grasping the big picture). As I’ve said before (and will repeat again), it’s worth understanding how this works.
Okay, with that said, let’s begin our Miraculous Molecule Tour. On this tour I invite you not just get a deeper insight into how DNA works, but to marvel at the beauty and sophistication of the whole process.
So let’s sit back, watch, learn and marvel.
DNA in Slow Motion
First-things-first, we’ll start with a nice introduction to DNA from the Intelligent Design folks. In this video they slowly, clearly and step-by-step walk us through the process of turning a strand of DNA into a working molecule.
Real Time, Really Amazing
The above video does a nice job explaining the process of how DNA works – let’s now see it in action in real time. We’ll start (almost) at the beginning – i.e, transcription. Transcription, in case you forgot from the previous video, is the process of making a copy of the DNA sequence in a particular gene. A gene is simply a section of DNA which codes for one particular protein (such as hemoglobin, hair, skin – each one has their own gene).
Here is a truly striking computer animation of this process. I have presented it in both the ‘Basic’ and ‘Advanced’ form. The Advanced format has more information (so it’s a bit more technical), but it also explains things a bit clearer. I think it’s worthwhile watching both if you can.
DNA Transcription (Basic Version)
DNA Transcription (Advanced Version)
At this point, we have a working copy of the the gene known as mRNA (or Messenger RNA). We now need to translate this copy into a string of Amino Acids. This process is called Transcription.
Once again, here are a few videos showing this process. I have included the Basic and Advanced version from the previous series, as well as a third video which while a bit more technical, shows a few of the concepts a bit more clearly. Once again, if you can, watch (and understand) all three.
DNA Translation (Basic Version)
DNA Translation (Advanced Version)
DNA Translation (Essential Biology, 3rd Edition Version)
Enough for Now
Alright, there is still a bit more to learn (such as how DNA copies itself and how the cell knows which section of DNA to copy at any given moment), but this is enough information to wrap our heads around for now. Either way, I hope you at least marveled at the wonders of G-d’s world – such a brilliant, beautiful miniature factory at work day-in-and-day-out in each and every one of us.