Telling Jewels From Junk in DNA

Author: Carl Zimmer
Date Published: January-2016
Source: New York Times

When you learned about genes in high school, chances are it went something like this: Our DNA holds about 20,000 protein-coding genes. To make a protein, a cell makes a copy of the corresponding gene, in the form of a single-stranded molecule called RNA. The cell uses the RNA molecule as a template to make the protein. And then the protein floats off to do its job. That’s certainly true. But there’s more to the story.