Impact of Local Environments on the Functional Potential of RNA

Metadata Updated: February 28, 2019

RNA world theories figure prominently in many scenarios for the origin and early evolution of life. These theories posit that RNA molecules played a much larger role in ancient biology than they do now, acting both as the dominant biocatalysts and as the repository of genetic information. Strong support for an RNA world is found in the functional capabilities of RNA exhibited by modern biology. Additional support for an RNA world is found in the diversity of functions that have been demonstrated independent of biology using in vitro evolution. In vitro evolution has identified RNA molecules that bind diverse molecular targets (aptamers) and RNAs that catalyze multiple reactions (ribozymes) including phosphoryl-transfer, redox reactions, and carbon-carbon bond formation. The RNA functions exhibited by modern biology and those discovered independent of biology through in vitro evolution have been used to developed and constrain RNA world theories; however, the conditions under which these experiments have been conducted is relatively narrow when compared the range of conditions under which life may have emerged. The range of conditions under which random sequence space has been probed for functional RNAs is far narrower than the range of conditions under which RNA is functional in extant biology, or is presumed to have been functional in the very earliest forms of life. To better understand the impact of the local environment on functional capacity and evolution of RNA, we will evolved several populations of catalytic RNAs staring from random sequences. These RNA populations will be evolved in a variety of different environments in vitro. Evaluating these populations will allow us to understand the impact of the local environment on RNA's functional potential ,what roles RNA could have played in the origin of life, and what conditions are most favorable to RNA catalysis.

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Public: This dataset is intended for public access and use. License: U.S. Government Work

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Metadata Created Date February 28, 2019
Metadata Updated Date February 28, 2019

Metadata Source

Harvested from NASA Data.json

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Resource Type Dataset
Metadata Created Date February 28, 2019
Metadata Updated Date February 28, 2019
Publisher Space Technology Mission Directorate
Unique Identifier TECHPORT_24060
Maintainer Email
Public Access Level public
Bureau Code 026:00
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Metadata Catalog ID
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Catalog Describedby
Harvest Object Id 6e9fe2a6-9136-494b-821e-50a1cf69b558
Harvest Source Id 39e4ad2a-47ca-4507-8258-852babd0fd99
Harvest Source Title NASA Data.json
Data First Published 2016-12-01
Homepage URL
Data Last Modified 2018-09-07
Program Code 026:027
Source Datajson Identifier True
Source Hash ca556f208bc9a23bf63b1c9da834470c3acf565e
Source Schema Version 1.1

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