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Trends Genet. 1993 Aug;9(8):265-8.

On the evolution of RNA editing.

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Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, Department of Biochemistry, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia.


The term 'RNA editing' encompasses a variety of processes that change the primary nucleotide sequence of an RNA transcript from that of its encoding DNA. As in the case of certain other molecular genetic phenomena, for example RNA splicing, the discovery of RNA editing presented molecular biologists with an evolutionary puzzle, since the existence of RNA editing offers no obvious selective advantage. A three-step model for the evolution of RNA editing is proposed, based on the co-evolution of editing activity and editing sites, with genetic drift as an important component. The implications of this model for the known forms of RNA editing are discussed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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