Composition and Structure
The structure of RNA has a single strand, like half of a ladder, while DNA has two strands being complemented together via chemical bonds. This structure appears like a twisted ladder and is quite longer than the one of RNA. The sugar component present in RNA is ribose, while DNA uses deoxyribose as its sugar component. The common thing between RNA and DNA is that both of these nucleic acids are made of nucleotides, comprising alternating sugar and phosphate molecules. The two types of nitrogenous base are the purines and pyrimidines, and these both are present in RNA and DNA. However, pyrimidines cytosine and thymine are present in DNA but RNA consists of cytosine and uracil.
DNA’s only function in the living cells is to store the code for genetic information, while RNA has other functions in the body as well. Three different types of RNA are present in living cells and they all have separate functions. For instance, the messenger RNA is made when the cell had the need to manufacturer proteins, the ribosome RNA construct the ribosome (these are the structures where proteins are synthesized) and the transfer RNA carry amino acids for making proteins.
DNA can be mostly found in the nucleus of the cells or at some specified areas. On the other hand, RNA is present throughout the cell in greater number than DNA.
DNA is structurally more stable than RNA and it is better adaptor to holding genetic material. The deoxyribose present in DNA does not react that much readily, making DNA molecule more stable.
Just because RNA is lesser stable, RNA viruses cause more dangerous illnesses than the more stable DNA viruses. RNA viruses can mutate up to 300 times the rate of DNA ones, causing more severe illness.