Difference between revisions of "Talk:Deoxyribonucleic acid"

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(more senseless babble)
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"All living creatures contain DNA" might be pushing it.  Viruses and retroviruses, AFAIK, only have RNA. [[User:Human|Human]] 21:46, 15 April 2007 (EDT)
 
"All living creatures contain DNA" might be pushing it.  Viruses and retroviruses, AFAIK, only have RNA. [[User:Human|Human]] 21:46, 15 April 2007 (EDT)
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::That's not quite correct, viruses have both single and double strand DNA and RNA, depending on the species.  Since the debate still rages as to whether virii are really "alive" (it's also a problem of definition, like "is Pluto a planet?"), I think for this blog's purposes "life" can be considered to start at a cellular minimum, and the statement that all life has DNA can stand. [[User:Human|Human]] 21:44, 30 April 2007 (EDT)
  
 
:Pushing my knowledge slightly but I'm fairly sure that virus's aren't actually living. [[User:MatteeNeutra|MatteeNeutra]] 11:51, 16 April 2007 (EDT)
 
:Pushing my knowledge slightly but I'm fairly sure that virus's aren't actually living. [[User:MatteeNeutra|MatteeNeutra]] 11:51, 16 April 2007 (EDT)
  
::It's definitely a matter of debate at some levels - it depends on how you define "living", of course.  One simplistic way would be to define life as things with DNA, making the definition here tautological.  In my opinion, I think better definitions revolve around self-replication, which viruses certainly do.  That they need other living things to achieve this is irrelevant, since most living things depend on others in order to replicate - for food, at the very least.  Even retroviruses, which as I recall are little more than a protein coverin gover a snippet of RNA, would meet this definition of "life", and I really see no problem with that. [[User:Human|Human]] 13:00, 16 April 2007 (EDT)
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::It's definitely a matter of debate at some levels - it depends on how you define "living", of course.  One simplistic way would be to define life as things with DNA, making the definition here tautological.  In my opinion, I think better definitions revolve around self-replication, which viruses certainly do.  That they need other living things to achieve this is irrelevant, since most living things depend on others in order to replicate - for food, at the very least.  Even <s>retroviruses</s> prions, which as I recall are little more than a protein <s>coverin gover a</s> snippet<s> of RNA</s>, would meet this definition of "life", and I really see no problem with that. [[User:Human|Human]] 13:00, 16 April 2007 (EDT)
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:::One problem with this level of definition is that crystals grow as well, in the right environment, effectively "reproducing".  And I don't think anyone thinks crystals are alive (except maybe a few new agers?).  Again, it comes down to trying to determine a scientific, useful definition for a "common language" word (cf. planet, above).  I think most of this sort of discussion is beyond the scope of this baramin-based wiki/blog, though. [[User:Human|Human]] 21:44, 30 April 2007 (EDT)
  
 
:::Oh okay! Seems to make sense to me, but as I said my knowledge is fairly limited! Cheers for the clear up. [[User:MatteeNeutra|MatteeNeutra]] 11:50, 17 April 2007 (EDT)
 
:::Oh okay! Seems to make sense to me, but as I said my knowledge is fairly limited! Cheers for the clear up. [[User:MatteeNeutra|MatteeNeutra]] 11:50, 17 April 2007 (EDT)
  
 
A double helix is just like one ladder that is twisted around.  The two sides of the ladder are the helices (and in this analogy, the base pairs are the rungs, of course).  Gattaca! [[User:Human|Human]] 11:47, 16 April 2007 (EDT)
 
A double helix is just like one ladder that is twisted around.  The two sides of the ladder are the helices (and in this analogy, the base pairs are the rungs, of course).  Gattaca! [[User:Human|Human]] 11:47, 16 April 2007 (EDT)

Revision as of 19:44, 30 April 2007

"All living creatures contain DNA" might be pushing it. Viruses and retroviruses, AFAIK, only have RNA. Human 21:46, 15 April 2007 (EDT)

That's not quite correct, viruses have both single and double strand DNA and RNA, depending on the species. Since the debate still rages as to whether virii are really "alive" (it's also a problem of definition, like "is Pluto a planet?"), I think for this blog's purposes "life" can be considered to start at a cellular minimum, and the statement that all life has DNA can stand. Human 21:44, 30 April 2007 (EDT)
Pushing my knowledge slightly but I'm fairly sure that virus's aren't actually living. MatteeNeutra 11:51, 16 April 2007 (EDT)
It's definitely a matter of debate at some levels - it depends on how you define "living", of course. One simplistic way would be to define life as things with DNA, making the definition here tautological. In my opinion, I think better definitions revolve around self-replication, which viruses certainly do. That they need other living things to achieve this is irrelevant, since most living things depend on others in order to replicate - for food, at the very least. Even retroviruses prions, which as I recall are little more than a protein coverin gover a snippet of RNA, would meet this definition of "life", and I really see no problem with that. Human 13:00, 16 April 2007 (EDT)
One problem with this level of definition is that crystals grow as well, in the right environment, effectively "reproducing". And I don't think anyone thinks crystals are alive (except maybe a few new agers?). Again, it comes down to trying to determine a scientific, useful definition for a "common language" word (cf. planet, above). I think most of this sort of discussion is beyond the scope of this baramin-based wiki/blog, though. Human 21:44, 30 April 2007 (EDT)
Oh okay! Seems to make sense to me, but as I said my knowledge is fairly limited! Cheers for the clear up. MatteeNeutra 11:50, 17 April 2007 (EDT)

A double helix is just like one ladder that is twisted around. The two sides of the ladder are the helices (and in this analogy, the base pairs are the rungs, of course). Gattaca! Human 11:47, 16 April 2007 (EDT)