What are three differences between RNA and DNA?

2 Answers | Add Yours

ncchemist's profile pic

ncchemist | eNotes Employee

Posted on

We are asked for three differences between DNA and RNA.  Two differences are structural, the other is functional.  One difference is that RNA contains a hydroxyl group on the 2 position of the ribose sugar while DNA does not (the D in DNA stands for deoxy).  Another difference is that DNA uses the nitrogenous base thymine as one of the four bases while RNA substitutes this with uracil.  Finally, both nucleic acids serve a difference function.  DNA contains all of the hereditary information for an organism.  It is a storage medium.  RNA is utilized in various forms for the synthesis of proteins in a cell.  It is less of a storage medium and more of a functional device.

terkmar's profile pic

terkmar | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) and RNA (ribonucleic acid) are both nucleic acids that are responsible for coding, transmitting and expressing genetic information.  Both DNA and RNA are composed of nitrogenous bases joined by a sugar-phosphate backbone.They have many structural and functional differences.  Structurally, DNA is double stranded while RNA is single stranded.  DNA contains the nitrogenous bases adenine, cytosine, guanine and thymine.   RNA contains the bases adenine, cytosine, guanine and uracil.   DNA has deoxyribose as its sugar, whereas RNA has ribose as its sugar.   Functionally, DNA is responsible for maintaining the protein encoding information (our hereditary information) while RNA will take that information and use it make proteins that are essential for life and building organisms.

We’ve answered 318,991 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question