Send to

Choose Destination
Trends Biochem Sci. 1991 Dec;16(12):463-7.

Selenoprotein synthesis: an expansion of the genetic code.

Author information

Lehrstuhl für Mikrobiologie, Universität München, FRG.


A number of enzymes employ the unusual amino acid selenocysteine as part of their active site because of its high chemical reactivity. Selenocysteine is incorporated into these proteins co-translationally: biosynthesis occurs on a specific tRNA and insertion into a growing polypeptide is directed by a UGA codon in the mRNA. In E. coli, this requires a specific translation factor. Selenocysteine thus represents a unique expansion of the genetic code.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center