26 February 2013

Tuesday Crustie: The crab as enzyme

The caption to this recent Cell cover (volume 153, number 3) leaves me baffled.

The cover image depicts RNA polymerase as a crab, with the small crab (upper right) symbolizing an elongating RNA polymerase moving along a string (i.e., DNA) and its claw, representing the clamp domain, closed. The central crab represents a paused polymerase. It is in a meditative state with its claws open, yet it keeps a grip on the string. Art by Oliver Hoeller.

Um. What?

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