Ribonucleic acid (RNA) is a chain of nucleotides present in the cells of all life. RNA has a number of important functions for living organisms, ranging from the regulation of gene expression to assistance with copying genes. Severo Ochoa, Robert Holley, and Carl Woese all played critical roles in discovering RNA and understanding how it worked, and more research on RNA is constantly being performed.
Many people are familiar with deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA), a nucleic acid which is often referred to as the “building blocks of life” because it contains the genetic material for its parent organism. RNA is equally important, even if it is lesser known, because RNA plays a critical role in helping DNA to copy and express genes, and to transport genetic material around in the cell. RNA also has a number of independent functions which are no less important.