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Masked messenger rna

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Masked messenger rna

(Science: molecular biology) long lived and stable mrna found originally in the oocytes of echinoderms and constituting a store of maternal information for protein synthesis that is unmasked (derepressed) during the early stages of morphogenesis.

in these early stages the rate of cell division is so rapid that transcription from the embryonic genome cannot occur. Undoubtedly not restricted to oocytes and the term can be applied to any mrna which is present in inactive form.