Synthetic microorganisms will help scientists to study ancient mysteries
Image Source: The Scripps Research Institute

By conducting a study on one of the engineered organisms- a single-celled organism with no organelles and nucleus called bacterium, who genome is comprised of both deoxyribonucleic (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA), the group of scientists are hoping to shed a light on the genetic material of the early evolution which also includes a theoretical transition from a place where most of the life relies completely on RNA where the DNA acts as the storehouse of the information of genes.

The scientists also hope that they can understand the chronicles of the cellular power plants known as mitochondria, the second engineered organism; they can modify the yeast which contains an endosymbiotic bacterium. The function of Mitochondria is to provide essential energy for different cells like eukaryotes and a broad group of organism that is possessed with cells that contain the nucleus.

The researchers have reported the engineering they have conducted on two papers, one that was published on 29th of October 2018 in the PNAS Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and another paper which was published on 30th of August 2018 in JACS Journal of the American Chemical Society.

The president of Scripps Research and the senior author on the paper, Peter Schultz, Ph.D. said that “the organisms that are recently engineered are to allow them to probe two of the significant vital theories regarding the significant milestones in the evolution of living being, i.e., from the transition of RNA to the world of DNA.


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