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Difference Between Nucleotide and Nucleoside

Nucleotide vs Nucleoside

Our DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid) has been widely studied and researched. This is because studying our DNA can bring a whole new world of discoveries and developments vital to our own progress and survival. This is because the DNA contains the genetic codes, blueprints, or genetic information that give rise to individual cell function. It is our DNA that further gives us the identity of who we are, and it is his DNA that could help us know what is happening to us, at the molecular level.

Before we go on and discuss the differences between the two, we must first know the different terms involved, thus, making explanations easier to understand and deal with. First are the nucleic acids. These are large molecule chains made up of smaller nucleotides, which constitute and carry the genetic information necessary for cell functioning and survival. In fact, almost all living things contain nucleic acids. Another term is a nucleobase or nitrogenous-base, which are organic compounds that contain nitrogen and are parts of a DNA or RNA (ribonucleic acid). Primary nucleobases are cytosine, guanine, adenine, thymine, and uracil. You can look them up for further information.

Another is ribose or deoxyribose sugar, which is a simple sugar that helps form the backbones for RNA or DNA. And lastly, the phosphate group is an organic compound that contains phosphorus, which provides energy necessary for cell function and life. Bear in mind that these terms are relevant to the topic at hand.

Let us now go to the differences between a nucleotide and nucleoside. First of all, is the nucleotide. A nucleotide is a molecule that is joined together in chains to form our DNA and RNA. In fact, nucleotides are considered as the building blocks for DNA and RNA. It has a vital part to play in cellular metabolism and the production of energy for vital functioning of different body processes. A group of nucleotides form a structured link that contains our genetic information. And lastly, it is made up of a five carbon sugar, a nucleobase, and a phosphate group.

On the other hand, a nucleoside is a compound that contains a nitrogenous-base bound to a deoxyribose or a ribose sugar. It occurs when nucleic acids are hydrolyzed or broken down. It is actually the end result when a nucleotide is broken down. Usually, ingestion of nucleic acid-rich foods allows the liver to produce nucleosides. And lastly, nucleosides can be used as anticancer or antiviral medications.

You can read more about this topic since the article only provides basic information.


1. Our DNA is made of different parts that contain genetic information necessary for cell survival, functioning, and growth.

2. Nucleotides are the building blocks of DNA or RNA, and are made up of a nucleobase, five-carbon sugar, and a phosphate group.

3. Nucleoside are the end result of a broken-down nucleotide, which contain a nucleobase bond to a sugar. They can act as anticancer or antiviral medication.

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