« Collateral Damage |
| Say, Brother, Can You Spare a DNA? »
by Ian Booth
Do bacteria ever take up intact RNA molecules?
Posted on May 28, 2009 at 09:36 AM in Talmudic Questions, Teachers Corner | Permalink
Well, okay, I actually have no idea, it just seems vaguely plausible to me. Given the ridiculously huge range of prokaryote phenotypes out there, I have trouble imagining that there isn't at least one out there that can't take up strands of RNA if they are ever found floating around in the environment.
I know (or at least recall) that the "natural competence" of certain members of the phylum Firmicutes involves taking up whole strands of DNA, but in single-stranded form. Not much of stretch to imagine an almost identical mechanism for uptake of strands of RNA.
If my assumption that there must be at least one that can do it is correct, the important followup question would be "what could they do with strands of RNA?" Use them as some sort of "sensor" indicating nearby lysed cells, maybe? Or just break it down immediately as nutrients?...
i have the same notion ---- that there is at least one microbe somewhere that can do anything we can imagine. There have been many that were found to do things we hadn't imagined. As to single-stranded DNA uptake, there is a bit about this in my post scheduled for this coming Monday.
May 28, 2009 at 03:04 PM
This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.
The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.
As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.
Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.
Comments are moderated, and will not appear until the author has approved them.
(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)
Name is required to post a comment
Please enter a valid email address