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Orig Life. 1984;14(1-4):571-8.

tRNA-rRNA sequence homologies: a model for the origin of a common ancestral molecule, and prospects for its reconstruction.


A model is proposed for the early evolution of the coding mechanism. A primordial RNA embodies the functions of today's nucleic acids in a single molecule. The molecule is generated by successive rounds of self-priming and -templating. After proximity is assured by enclosure in a cell, the functions can be partitioned among more efficient specialized molecules. The prediction of sequence homologies in later forms prompted a search for matches between t- and r-RNAs. These are described. Their distributions offer clues to their origins. The existance of overlapping homologies indicates an approach to the reconstruction of an ancestral molecule.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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