codon family

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A set of codons all coding for the same amino acid or signalling the end of a genetic message, such as the set of RNA codons GGU, GGC, GGA, and GGG, all coding for the amino acid glycine, or the set UAA, UAG, and UGA, all reserved as stop codons. With only 20 amino acids involved in the synthesis of proteins and four bases to encode them, there is redundancy in the genetic code, because there are 64 possible triplets of four bases; consequently, every amino acid apart from tryptophan (UGG) is encoded by at least two different codons.

Subjects: Psychology.

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