Suppose I cut a human DNA molecule that was 6800Å long into 5 equal sized pieces using molecular scissors, how can I find out number of nucleotides in each of the cut pieces? Please give a bit detailed solution. I'm kinda new to these kind of questions.
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Angstroms are a measure of distance. 1 angstrom is a tenth of a nanometer, i.e. 10 nanometers make 1 angstrom.
Your DNA molecule: 6800 A
Cut into 5 equal pieces: 6800/5 = 1360
Each cut DNA piece is 1360 A long.
A DNA helix has the following properties: 10 base pairs extend 34 A.
1360/34 = 40 = how many '10 base pairs' of length you have in each cut DNA piece.
If a cut piece has forty 10 base pairs of length, the full length has 40 * 10 bp.
40 * 10 = 400 bp.
Each cut piece is 400 bp long. The original DNA piece, uncut, is five times the size of its cut. In other words, the original DNA piece is (400 * 5) 2000 bp long.