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2008 National DNA Day Online Chatroom Transcript

This is just one question from an archive of the National DNA Day Moderated Chat held in April 2008. The NHGRI Director and many genomics experts from across NHGRI took questions from students, teachers and the general public on topics ranging from basic genomic research, to the genetic basis of disease, to ethical questions about genetic privacy.

Here's one for you: how does RNA exit the nucleus, but DNA cannot?
     Phyllis Frosst, Ph.D.: Investigating genetic discrimination, direct to consumer marketing of genetic tests and pharmacogenomics. The answer lies in the power of the Nuclear Pore Complex, a channel made of more than 100 proteins that sits in the nuclear envelope. RNA has a signal that allows it to be transported through the channel and out of the nucleus, like a metro passenger through a turnstile with a metro pass. As well, DNA is much much bigger than RNA, again making it a lot more likely to stay in the nucleus where it belongs.
Kittanning Senior High School in PA (9th grade student)

< View ALL questions and answers from 2008

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