nucleic acid


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nu·cle·ic ac·id

(nū-klē'ik as'id),
A family of macromolecules, of molecular masses ranging upward from 25,000, found in the chromosomes, nucleoli, mitochondria, and cytoplasm of all cells, and in viruses; in complexes with proteins, they are called nucleoproteins. On hydrolysis they yield purines, pyrimidines, phosphoric acid, and a pentose, either d-ribose or d-deoxyribose; from the last, the nucleic acids derive their more specific names, ribonucleic acid and deoxyribonucleic acid. Nucleic acids are linear (that is, unbranched) chains of nucleotides in which the 5'-phosphoric group of each one is esterified with the 3'-hydroxyl of the adjoining nucleotide.

nucleic acid

/nu·cle·ic ac·id/ (noo-kle´ik) a high-molecular-weight nucleotide polymer. There are two types: deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) and ribonucleic acid (RNA).

nucleic acid

(no͞o-klē′ĭk, -klā′-, nyo͞o-)
n.
Any of a class of large molecules that are polymers of nucleotides and are found in all living organisms and viruses. The principal nucleic acids, DNA and RNA, are the carriers of hereditary information and control the synthesis of proteins.

nucleic acid

[no̅o̅klē′ik]
Etymology: L, nucleus + acidus, sour
a high-molecular-weight polymeric compound composed of nucleotides, each consisting of a purine or pyrimidine base, a ribose or deoxyribose sugar, and a phosphate group. Nucleic acids are involved in the determination and transmission of genetic characteristics. Kinds of nucleic acid are deoxyribonucleic acid and ribonucleic acid. See also nucleotide.

nu·cle·ic ac·id

(nū-klē'ik as'id)
A family of macromolecules found in the chromosomes, nucleoli, mitochondria, and cytoplasm of all cells, and in viruses; in complexes with proteins, they are called nucleoproteins.
Enlarge picture
NUCLEIC ACID: DNA and RNA

nucleic acid

Any of the high-molecular-weight molecules that carry the genetic information crucial to the replication of cells and the manufacturing of cellular proteins. They have a complex structure formed of sugars (pentoses), phosphoric acid, and nitrogen bases (purines and pyrimidines). Most important are ribonucleic acid (RNA) and deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). See: illustration
See also: acid

nucleic acid

DNA or RNA. A very long polymer molecule made up of MONOMERS of either deoxyribonucleotides or ribonucleotides, joined by PHOSPHODIESTER BONDS. Nucleic acids constitute the chromosomes of almost all living cells and, by virtue of the order of the contained purine and pyrimidine BASE PAIRS, manifest the genetic code.

nucleic acid

a molecule comprising a sequence of NUCLEOTIDES forming a POLYNUCLEOTIDE CHAIN. Nucleic acids act as the genetic material of cells and occur as either DNA or RNA.

Nucleic acid

The cellular molecules DNA and RNA that act as coded instructions for the production of proteins and are copied for transmission of inherited traits.
Mentioned in: Sickle Cell Disease

nu·cle·ic ac·id

(nū-klē'ik as'id)
A family of macromolecules found in chromosomes, nucleoli, mitochondria, and cytoplasm of all cells; in complexes with proteins, called nucleoproteins.

nucleic acid,

n a family of macromolecules found in the chromosomes, nucleoli, mitochondria, and cytoplasm of all cells. In complexes with proteins, they are called
nucleoproteins.
nucleic acid probes,
n nucleic acid that complements a specific RNA or DNA molecule or fragment; used for hybridization studies to identify microorganisms and for genetic studies.
Nucleopolyhedrovirus
n (nuclear polyhedrosis virus), a genus of the family
Baculoviridae, characterized by the formation of crystalline, polyhedral occlusion bodies in the host cell nucleus.
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