DNA, or deoxyribonucleic acid, is the hereditary material in humans và almost all other organisms. Nearly every cell in a person’s body toàn thân has the same DNA. Most DNA is located in the cell nucleus (where it is called nuclear DNA), but a small amount of DNA can also be found in the mitochondria (where it is called mitochondrial DNA or mtDNA). Mitochondria

are structures within cells that convert the energy from food inkhổng lồ a form that cells can use.

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The information in DNA is stored as a code made up of four chemical bases: adenine (A), guanine (G), cytosine (C), & thymine (T). Human DNA consists of about 3 billion bases, và more than 99 percent of those bases are the same in all people. The order, or sequence, of these bases determines the information available for building và maintaining an organism, similar lớn the way in which letters of the alphabet appear in a certain order lớn size words & sentences.

DNA bases pair up with each other, A with T và C with G, to khung units called base pairs. Each base is also attached to lớn a sugar molecule & a phosphate molecule. Together, a base, sugar, & phosphate are called a nucleotide. Nucleotides are arranged in two long strands that size a spiral called a double helix. The structure of the double helix is somewhat lượt thích a ladder, with the base pairs forming the ladder’s rungs và the sugar and phosphate molecules forming the vertical sidepieces of the ladder.

An important property of DNA is that it can replicate, or make copies of itself. Each strand of DNA in the double helix can serve sầu as a pattern for duplicating the sequence of bases. This is critical when cells divide because each new cell needs khổng lồ have an exact copy of the DNA present in the old cell.

DNA is a double helix formed by base pairs attached khổng lồ a sugar-phosphate backbone.


Credit: U.S. National Library of Medicine

For more information about DNA:

The National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI), a part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), provides a fact sheet Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA) that gives an introduction khổng lồ this molecule.

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StatedClearly offers a Clip introduction to DNA và how it works.

The New Genetics, a publication of the National Institute of General Medical Sciences, part of the NIH, discusses the structure of DNA và how it was discovered.

A basic explanation và illustration of DNA can be found on Arizomãng cầu State University"s "Ask a Biologist" website.

The Virtual Genetics Education Centre, created by the University of Leicester, offers additional information on DNA, genes, and chromosomes.

An overview of mitochondrial DNA is available from the Neuromuscular Disease Center at Washington University in St. Louis.


Genetics Home Reference has merged with Genetics trang chủ Reference content now can be found in the "Genetics" section of Learn more

The resources on this site should not be used as a substitute for professional medical care or advice. Users with questions about a personal health condition should consult with a qualified healthcare professional.

U.S. National Library of Medicine 8600 Rockville Pike, Bethesdomain authority, MD 20894 U.S. Department of Health & Human Services National Institutes of Health

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