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Codons, Anticodons

In this animation, we'll take a more detailed look at the structure and function of a tRNA molecule. As you can see, tRNA is a single strand that is held together in a cloverleaf shape by hydrogen bonds between complimentary bases. The role of the tRNA is to decode the mRNA sequence and to convert it into an amino acid sequence.

This decoding can occur because the bottom loop of the tRNA molecule contains an anticodon that recognizes an mRNA codon, while the other end binds to the appropriate amino acid for that codon. During translation the anticodon base pairs with the mRNA codon, allowing the tRNA to transfer its amino acid to the growing polypeptide chain.





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