Biotechnology Lectire Video 7

So we’re still in our “omics.” Now we’re in
transcriptomics – this is the study of transcription. Remember transcription is
when we make messenger RNA from our DNA. We’ve talked about just these three main
kinds of RNA. There are actually a huge variety and a lot of work is going into
understanding what the role of all these different RNA molecules are. RNA is going to be our key connection between the genome, our DNA, and the proteome – the proteins that actually build structures and act as enzymes to control chemical reactions inside the cell. It’s going to look at how transcription varies with different cell types and within species. Proteomics is the study of all the
proteins made by an organism. And clearly (hopefully) you can see all of this is closely interrelated. But here in proteomics, we’re going to study both the structure of the proteins and try and figure out their function. In a minute, you’ll watch
this video which I think is a good summary of how all these “omics” are
connected. It’s a little “advertisementee” for a particular kind of software – just
ignore that part and enjoy the introduction to proteomics itself! Finally, we have “metabolomics.” This is the study of metabolites. Metabolites are the small chemicals that are intermediates and products in all the chemical reactions and living systems. When we study, for example, how to make ATP, we only talk about the reactants and the products, but the metabolites are all the things
in between, and if you really want to understand a healthy cell, we need to
understand all of those intermediate products as well. This video is going to
show a lab that is studying these kinds of metabolites, and the narrator is going
to talk about some pieces of equipment that I don’t understand and uses a lot
of big words – this is for the future engineers in this class who may have a
hand in designing some of this kind of equipment. Metabolites can be really important in providing feedback and regulation of the genome, transcriptome, and
proteome. So you can see how interconnected all of the “omics” are. It could mean that a metabolite attaches to the DNA, and blocks transcription, or it could be that a metabolite attaches to a protein and helps that protein function better, or maybe the metabolite disrupts certain kinds of messenger RNA. And I also like this graphic to show the idea of understanding – what do we all have in common? what does all life do? and then what’s specific? What is specific about human genes versus other species and then what do we all do and use in common?

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