Quantum Biology Study Finds Enzyme May Be Key To DNA Mutation

Enzymes are crucial to controlling how cells replicate in the body and may be the ingredient that encourages spontaneous mutations in DNA, according to new research published recently by quantum biologists in the journal Nature. The famous double-helix structure of DNA gives it extraordinary stability. When a cell begins to replicate itself, it must replicate its DNA. The first step is to separate the DNA into two single strands by a type of enzyme called a ‘helicase’. Potential mutant DNA bases must survive this process to stand a chance of causing permanent genetic errors. The conventional thought is that the helicase enzyme acts too slowly that any spontaneous point mutations will return to their natural, more stable position when the DNA strands are separated. Using state-of-the-art quantum chemical calculations, the researchers found that, however, part of the process of DNA self-replication occurs 100 times faster than previously predicted. Mutations caused by the quantum tunneling effect are more stable due to the action of the helicase enzyme. The helicase enzyme is closely associated with the formation of quantum mutations. This research project focuses on explaining how quantum mechanical effects may hold the key to the secret of genetic mutations, and their numerous consequences for life on Earth.

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