Are introns just junk?

Keith Robison robison1 at
Tue Oct 26 09:17:18 EST 1993

eesnyder at beagle.Colorado.EDU (Eric E. Snyder) writes:

>cjp at (Christopher Pook (Bioc)) writes:

>>apland at (Shannon) writes:

>>He speculated
>>that the apparently wasted energy that the cell puts into transcribing
>>precursor RNA (if the introns role is in DNA recombination or replication
>>then why include them in RNA??) allowed the cell to verify the transcribed
>>sequence before translation, thus preventing synthesis of incorrect protein.

>Verify the sequence before translation?   There was a paper in Science a 
>few months back that showed a case where a single nonsense mutation in an
>exon altered the pattern of mRNA splicing.  Very interesting... they 
>proposed no mechanism for this effect but it certainly makes one wonder.

More likely it is the other way around (I think this is how the interpretation
goes) -- translation may help drive splicing.  Sarah Gibbs is one of
the major authors in this field.

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