RNA Adenine. Foldit atom numbers for RNA in black. (Hydro/score+CPK coloring, view hybrid of cartoon and stick+polar.)

Adenine is one of four bases or nucleotides that make up RNA and DNA.

In DNA, adenine is normally paired with thymine. In RNA, adenine may be paired with uracil, which is chemically related to thymine. Unlike DNA, however, RNA can take on a variety of shapes, so adenine and uracil aren't always paired.

Adenine (left) bonded to uracil (right).

Bonding[edit | edit source]

The table below shows the non-backbone atoms for RNA adenine that can form hydrogen bonds. See RNA backbone and DNA backbone for the backbone atoms. DNA lacks the oxygen at atom 12, so the number for the other atoms are lower by one in DNA.

RNA atom DNA atom element acceptor donor
12 n.a. oxygen yes yes
13 12 nitrogen yes yes
19 18 nitrogen no yes
20 19 nitrogen yes yes
22 21 nitrogen no yes
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