Translation Analogy

A cell is like a restaurant – differentiated cell types are like restaurants specialising in different cuisines

The DNA is the set of instructions for the cell – like a cook book is the set of instructions for a restaurant

A single DNA instruction is a gene – this is akin to a single recipe in a cook book

Transcription is the process of making an RNA copy of a gene – RNA polymerase is like a photocopy machine

The mRNA transcript (i.e. photocopied recipe) is transported to the ribosome – which functions as the cook

The ribosome reads the mRNA one codon at a time – as a cook would read the recipe one step at a time

Each codon corresponds to an amino acid – just like each step in a recipe refers to a specific ingredient

The amino acids are brought to the ribosome by tRNA – these tRNA molecules are like kitchen hands

The ribosome joins the amino acids together to make a polypeptide – just like a cook mixes ingredients to make food

Overview of the Translation Analogy

translation analogy