I learned about DNA and RNA in high school pretty in-depth, but I thought it was interesting how these few classes covered aspects that I hadn’t learned or even really thought about before.
For example, I had learned what RNA does, but not why we have both RNA and DNA. It was really cool to learn that DNA is more durable than RNA, and therefore it’s safer to record genetic information in that form since it’s less likely to be accidentally changed. But RNA takes less energy to replicate, so it’s more efficient.
I’d also learned before that carbon is so versatile because it can form 4 bonds, but I hadn’t learned why silicon couldn’t take its place. We learned in lecture that silicon turns into sand when it comes into contact with water, therefore rendering it as not an option on an Earth-like planet that requires water to survive — which I thought was really interesting and something I hadn’t thought about before.