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Alternative splicing

In Eukaryotes the splicing process of a pre-mRNA can lead to different ripe mRNA molecules and therefore to different proteines. This phenomenon is called alternative splicing. Also viruses have adaptated to this biochemical process when using the protein biosynthesis apparatus.

When the pre-mRNA has been transscribed from the DNA, it includes several introns and exons. In Nematodes, the mean is 4-5 exons and introns, in Drosophila there are more than 100 introns and exons in one transscribed pre-mRNA. But what is an intron and what is an exon is not decided yet. This decision is made during the splicing process. The regulation is widely unknown. However, this leads to a new view of genes. A gene therefore is a twofold information structure:

The alternative splicing is of great importance: