🧬 DNA Structure (WJEC)

DNA structure


DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) is a large molecule which carries the genetic information, or blueprint, of all life on Earth. Mutations arising in the DNA code account for the diversity upon which evolution by natural selection can work. Therefore, it is not far-fetched to say that DNA is one of the central, most important molecules in living organisms.

For such an important molecule, it sure looks beautiful:



DNA is a double helix i.e. two individual strands running along each other in an anti-parallel way, connected to one another by relatively weak hydrogen bonds. DNA’s structure can be learned easily by thinking about the strands and the β€œstuff in-between” separately.


What are the strands made of?

The strands are made of repeating units consisting of a deoxyribose (sugar) molecule with a phosphate molecule attached to it; hence, it is called a sugar-phosphate backbone.



Phosphodiester bonds between nucleotides (above) create the…