AAT Bioquest

Is DNA a protein?

Posted February 4, 2021


No, DNA is not a protein. The major relationship between DNA and protein is that DNA encodes the information that is necessary to synthesize proteins. But DNA itself is not a protein.

DNA is composed of long chains of nucleotides. Each nucleotide molecule is made up of three components – a phosphate group, a pentose sugar, and a nitrogenous base. The nitrogenous base could be either cytosine, guanine, thymine, or adenine. DNA is structured as a double helix and is usually located in cell nucleus. DNA replication also takes place inside the cell nucleus.  

Proteins are large molecules made up of one or more long sequences of amino acids. Each amino acid molecule is made up of a basic amino group, an acidic carboxylic group, a hydrogen, and an R group. There are twenty different amino acids that form protein. Proteins may be located anywhere in the cell and show a several variations in their structure. Synthesis of proteins occurs on ribosomes located outside the nucleus in the cytoplasm.   


Additional resources

DNA structure and function

DNA Concentration Calculator