Modeling the Size and Structure of RNA: Viral vs. Non-viral Sequences
|Title||Modeling the Size and Structure of RNA: Viral vs. Non-viral Sequences|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2009|
|Authors||Ben-Shaul, A, Yoffe, AM, Prinsen, P, Gelbart, WM|
Based on a simple linear polymer model we derive a scaling relationship between the “maximum-ladder-distance” characterizing the secondary structure of folded, single stranded, RNA and the radius of gyration characterizing its spatial dimensions. Secondary structures are calculated for a large number of viral RNA sequences as well as non-viral sequences of comparable length and nucleotide composition. The results show that viral RNAs fold into significantly smaller 3D structures than non-viral sequences, consistent with an evolutionary pressure to package the viral sequences inside small rigid protein capsids.