The concept of catalytically active RNA was first postulated in the late 1960s as part of an elegant scenario to describe the origin of life (Woese 1967; Crick 1968; Orgel 1968). Subsequently, the unexpected discovery in the early 1980s that ribozymes were, in fact, active and essential components of contemporary living organisms was a paradigm-shifting breakthrough. Tom Cech, studying intron splicing (an intron is a region of RNA that interrupts the protein-coding region of some messenger RNAs and which must be removed in a process called RNA splicing before the mRNA can be correctly translated into a protein) (Kruger et al. 1982), and Sidney Altman, investigating ribonuclease...
KeywordsCatalysis RNA RNA world
References and Further Reading
- Woese C (1967) The genetic code: the molecular basis for genetic expression. Harper & Row, New YorkGoogle Scholar