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Polyribosomes (or polysomes) are a cluster of ribosomes, bound to a mRNA molecule, first discovered and characterized by Jonathan Warner, Paul Knopf, and Alex Rich in 1963.[1] Polyribosomes read this mRNA simultaneously, helping to synthesize the same protein at different spots on the mRNA, mRNA being the "messenger" in the process of protein synthesis. They may appear as clusters, linear arrays, or rosettes in routine: this is aided by the fact that mRNA is able to be twisted into a circular formation, creating a cycle of rapid ribosome recycling, and utilization of ribosomes. 5' cap and 3' polyA tail aids in this process.[2]

Polyribosomes can be found in three forms: free, cytoskeletal bound and membrane bound.

External links

Theoretical and experimental structure of polysome


  1. Warner JR, Knopf PM, Rich A (1963). "A multiple ribosomal structure in protein synthesis". Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 49: 122–9. PMID 13998950. Summary
  2. Harvey Lodish; et al. (1999). "4.5. Stepwise Formation of Proteins on Ribosomes". Molecular cell biology. New York: Scientific American Books. ISBN 0-7167-3136-3.

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