A Single-Molecule View on Cellular and Viral RNA Synthesis

  • Eugen Ostrofet
  • Flavia Stal Papini
  • Anssi M. Malinen
  • David DulinEmail author
Part of the Biological and Medical Physics, Biomedical Engineering book series (BIOMEDICAL)


RNA synthesis is at the heart of gene expression, the RNA products serving in cellular organisms as protein blueprints, structural/functional components of molecular machines or regulators of gene expression, and as the genetic material of nascent RNA viruses. Because of its importance, transcription—the process converting DNA to RNA—has been extensively studied at the single-molecule level; first in bacterial systems and quickly after in other domains of life. RNA replication in RNA viruses has recently become an important research topic in the single-molecule field, aiming not only to uncover its versatile mechanisms but also to develop new therapeutics against these devastating human pathogens. Here, we summarize the recent advances in cellular and viral RNA production using in vitro single-molecule techniques.


Single-molecule biophysics Transcription RNA virus RNA replication  Cellular RNA polymerases  Viral RNA-dependent RNA polymerases Optical tweezers Magnetic tweezers Fluorescence resonance energy transfer 



DD was supported by the Interdisciplinary Center for Clinical Research (IZKF) at the University Hospital of the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. A. M. M. was supported by the Academy of Finland (grant number: 307775).


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Eugen Ostrofet
    • 1
  • Flavia Stal Papini
    • 1
  • Anssi M. Malinen
    • 2
  • David Dulin
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Junior Research Group 2, Interdisciplinary Center for Clinical ResearchFriedrich Alexander University Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU)ErlangenGermany
  2. 2.Department of BiochemistryUniversity of TurkuTurkuFinland

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