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What is RNase? 

RNase is an enzyme that catalyses the hydrolysis of RNA. 

Why do we need RNase?

RNase is an essential enzyme. This is because although the breakdown of RNA occurs naturally through acid-base hydrolysis, the reaction needs to be catalysed to allow life to exist. 

How does RNase allow hydrolysis to happen?

Hydrolysis can take place due to two key amino acids in RNase. Histidne 12 and Histidine 119, when the enzyme is folded are next to one another, allowing the vibration of electrons to and from one another. This allows a chain of 4 amino acids to become hydrophilic and allow water to travel into the active site of the enzyme and hydrolise RNA. 


All information was retrieved from 2017/2018 Biochemistry lecture 14 - Dr Owen Davies - Newcastle university 

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