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Biology Student

EQ: If there are only four nucleotide types in DNA, why are
all living things so different?
Enduring Understanding
Proteins determine the structure and function of living things.

Genetic Code of
Life
Amino Acid Codon Chart
Broad Brush Knowledge
mutations, protein synthesis
Concepts Important to Know and Understand
DNA Processes
Target
4. Using descriptions or diagrams of protein synthesis, be able to
use the odon hart to determine the corresponding amino acid
Core Obecti!es
5. Identify the structure & function of nucleic acids including their
role in biodiversity.
There are to !enetic "ode of #ife $ Amino Acid "odon "harts in this document. %ne has the clue of &
st

'ase, (nd 'ase and )
rd
'ase on the chart. The other does not clue the students as to hich base is found
in hich area of the chart.
Identifying the base is helpful in the beginning but students need to be able to use the chart ithout base
indication eventually.
What is the Genetic Code of Life
The amino acid codon chart is often referred to as the !enetic "ode of #ife. A unifying feature of life is that
cells almost alays use the same genetic language to turn DNA codes into *NA, then proteins. This is
because the triplet codons that represent certain amino acids are the same in most organisms. In a
bacterium, a bean or a dolphin, the same three letters of *NA stand for the same amino acid. +"A, for
e,ample, codes for serine.
-hile true for most organisms, as genome pro.ects spread to different species, scientists have found some
e,ceptions. /ost of these e,ceptions occur in the mitochondria of round orms and arthropods.
!"N"#I $D" $% &I%" ' (iology )*evised +une ,-, ,../0 )printed 12312,.340 p. &
GENETIC CODE OF LIFE
mRNA Codon and Corresponding Amino Acid Chart
2nd Base in Codon
C A G
!
s
t

B
a
s
e

i
n

C
o
d
o
n

Phenylalanine 0erine Tyrosine "ysteine


"
r
d

B
a
s
e

I
n

C
o
d
o
n
Phenylalanine 0erine Tyrosine "ysteine C
#eucine 0erine 0top "odon 0top "odon A
#eucine 0erine 0top "odon Tryptophan G
C
#eucine Proline 1istidine Arginine
#eucine Proline 1istidine Arginine C
#eucine Proline !lutamine Arginine A
#eucine Proline !lutamine Arginine G
A
lsoleucine Threonine Asparagine 0erine
lsoleucine Threonine Asparagine 0erine C
lsoleucine Threonine #ysine Arginine A
/ethionine Threonine #ysine Arginine G
G
2aline Alanine Aspartic Acid !lycine
2aline Alanine Aspartic Acid !lycine C
2aline Alanine !lutamic Acid !lycine A
2aline Alanine !lutamic Acid !lycine G
!"N"#I $D" $% &I%" ' (iology )*evised +une ,-, ,../0 )printed 12312,.340 p. (
GENETIC CODE OF LIFE
mRNA Codon and Corresponding Amino Acid Chart
C A G

Phenylalanine 0erine Tyrosine "ysteine


Phenylalanine 0erine Tyrosine "ysteine C
#eucine 0erine 0top "odon 0top "odon A
#eucine 0erine 0top "odon Tryptophan G
C
#eucine Proline 1istidine Arginine
#eucine Proline 1istidine Arginine C
#eucine Proline !lutamine Arginine A
#eucine Proline !lutamine Arginine G
A
lsoleucine Threonine Asparagine 0erine
lsoleucine Threonine Asparagine 0erine C
lsoleucine Threonine #ysine Arginine A
/ethionine Threonine #ysine Arginine G
G
2aline Alanine Aspartic Acid !lycine
2aline Alanine Aspartic Acid !lycine C
2aline Alanine !lutamic Acid !lycine A
2aline Alanine !lutamic Acid !lycine G
!"N"#I $D" $% &I%" ' (iology )*evised +une ,-, ,../0 )printed 12312,.340 p. )