Central Dogma

The central dogma of molecular biology explains the flow of genetic information within a cell

  • DNA codes for RNA via the process of transcription (occurs within the nucleus)
  • RNA codes for protein via the process of translation (occurs at the ribosomes)

This information flow was always considered to be uni-directional:  DNA 
→ RNA → Protein

However in 1970 it was discovered that retroviruses could copy DNA from an RNA sequence

  • These viruses possess an enzyme (reverse transcriptase) that allows for reverse transcription to occur
  • Reverse transcription is now commonly used in scientific studies to establish gene expression profiles

The Central Dogma of Molecular Biology

central dogma