Discipline: Computer Sciences and Information Management
Subcategory: Computer Science & Information Systems
Annette Hall - University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff
The genetic code is the blueprint of who we are. There was no life in the prebiotic period, but only nine out of the 20 standard amino acids, which make up the genetic code existed during the period. However, evolutionary events occurred, which resulted in a world of no life giving rise to a world of abundance of life. How nature used only four nucleotides to build its proteins and forming the genetic code, which resulted in life on Earth are full of mystery. Three theories have been propounded about the origin of the genetic code. The stereochemical theory is according to which codon assignments are prescribed by physico-chemical correspondence between amino acids and the anticodons. The Coevolution theory hypothesizes that the code structure coevolved with amino acid biosynthesis pathways. The Adaptive theory, also known as error minimization theory, which is based on natural selection suggests that selection to lessen the detrimental effects of point mutations and translation errors was the leading influence on the code’s evolution. Our intension is to determine if metabolic pathways found in living organisms can serve as accurate guides to ancient evolutionary events. We utilized comparative computer platforms such as BLAST and Protein Databank among others in our efforts to uncover relationships of enzymes involved in the biosynthesis pathway. A 3D crystal structure of enzymes was determined using algorithms such as the Pymol to give us clear visual observation. The expected outcome is to find the links between the enzymes in the biosynthesis pathway. In future research we plan on discovering what the 3D crystal structures actually tell us about ancient evolutionary events and also give a visual observation into the enzymes.
Funder Acknowledgement(s): Department of Mathematics and Computer Sciences, University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff/ Project is funded by NSF/HBCU-UP.
Faculty Advisor: Onyilagha, J, firstname.lastname@example.org
Role: We utilized comparative computer platforms such as BLAST and Protein Databank among others in our efforts to uncover relationships of enzymes involved in the biosynthesis pathway. A 3D crystal structure of enzymes was determined using algorithms such as the Pymol to give us clear visual observation.