The human genom - how is it distributed?

William Tivol tivol at
Mon Mar 31 17:24:14 EST 1997

Susan Hogarth (sjhogart at wrote:

: I don't think you answered his question. In essence, he is asking if
: what is called the "sense" (coding) strand for one gene might be the
: "antisense" (noncoding) strand for a gene at another site on the *same*
: chromosome. 

: I *think* this is possible in humans, but I'm not sure. (I'm almost
: positive it happens in viruses, though).
: -- 
Dear Susan,
	I think you're right about viruses--they have some very clever
information compression schemes.  Although I cannot rule out the possi-
bility that there are active genes on both strands, I think that this
does not occur for humans.  One of the many experts in this field should
be able to make more definitive comments.
	I do not think anyone knows how most of the non-translated parts
of the genome (called "junk DNA" at one time) act to regulate gene ex-
pression, or whether such regulation is restricted to one or the other
strand.  I would guess that there is some functionality in the antisense
strand, but that is strictly speculation on my part.
				Bill Tivol

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