Learning Objectives

By the end of this section, friend will have the ability to do the following:

Discuss the similarities and differences between DNA replication in eukaryotes and prokaryotesState the role of telomerase in DNA replication

Eukaryotic genomes are much more facility and larger in size than prokaryotes genomes. Eukaryotes likewise have a number of different direct chromosomes. The human being genome has 3 billion base pairs every haploid set of chromosomes, and also 6 billion basic pairs room replicated during the S phase of the cell cycle. There room multiple beginnings of replication on each eukaryotic chromosome; humans have the right to have as much as 100,000 origins of replication across the genome. The rate of replication is around 100 nucleotides per second, lot slower than prokaryotic replication. In yeast, which is a eukaryote, one-of-a-kind sequences known as autonomously replicating sequences (ARS) are discovered on the chromosomes. This are indistinguishable to the origin of replication in E. Coli.

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The variety of DNA polymerases in eukaryotes is much more than in prokaryotes: 14 room known, that which 5 are well-known to have significant roles during replication and have to be well studied. Lock are well-known as pol α, pol β, pol γ, pol δ, and pol ε.

The vital steps that replication room the same as in prokaryotes. Before replication have the right to start, the DNA has to be made obtainable as a template. Eukaryotic DNA is bound to basic proteins known as histones to type structures called nucleosomes. Histones must be removed and also then replaced during the replication process, which helps to account for the lower replication price in eukaryotes. The chromatin (the complicated between DNA and also proteins) may undergo some chemical modifications, so that the DNA may have the ability to slide turn off the proteins or be easily accessible to the enzymes of the DNA replication machinery. At the origin of replication, a pre-replication complex is make with other initiator proteins. Helicase and also other proteins are then recruited to begin the replication process ((Figure)).

Difference in between Prokaryotic and also Eukaryotic ReplicationPropertyProkaryotesEukaryotes
Origin of replicationSingleMultiple
Rate the replication1000 nucleotides/s50 to 100 nucleotides/s
DNA polymerase types514
TelomeraseNot presentPresent
RNA inside wall removalDNA pol IRNase H
Strand elongationDNA pol IIIPol α, pol δ, pol ε
Sliding clampSliding clampPCNA

A helicase making use of the energy from ATP hydrolysis opens up the DNA helix. Replication forks are developed at every replication origin as the DNA unwinds. The opened of the double helix causes over-winding, or supercoiling, in the DNA ahead of the replication fork. This are fixed with the action of topoisomerases. Primers are developed by the enzyme primase, and using the primer, DNA pol deserve to start synthesis. Three significant DNA polymerases room then involved: α, δ and also ε. DNA pol α add to a quick (20 come 30 nucleotides) DNA fragment to the RNA primer on both strands, and then hands turn off to a second polymerase. When the leading strand is repetitively synthesized by the enzyme pol δ, the lagging strand is synthesized by pol ε. A sliding clamp protein well-known as PCNA (proliferating cell nuclear antigen) holds the DNA pol in ar so the it does no slide off the DNA. Together pol δ runs right into the inside wall RNA top top the lagging strand, it displaces that from the DNA template. The displaced primer RNA is then gotten rid of by RNase H (AKA flap endonuclease) and also replaced through DNA nucleotides. The Okazaki fragments in the lagging strand are joined after the instead of of the RNA primers v DNA. The gaps that continue to be are sealed through DNA ligase, which forms the phosphodiester bond.

Telomere replication

Unlike prokaryotic chromosomes, eukaryotic chromosomes room linear. As you’ve learned, the enzyme DNA pol can include nucleotides just in the 5′ to 3′ direction. In the leading strand, synthesis continues until the end of the chromosome is reached. On the lagging strand, DNA is synthesized in brief stretches, every of i beg your pardon is initiated by a different primer. Once the replication fork reaches the finish of the straight chromosome, there is no way to replace the inside wall on the 5’ end of the lagging strand. The DNA at the end of the chromosome hence remains unpaired, and also over time these ends, called telomeres, may get progressively much shorter as cells proceed to divide.

Telomeres make up repetitive assignment that password for no certain gene. In humans, a six-base-pair sequence, TTAGGG, is repeated 100 to 1000 times in the telomere regions. In a way, these telomeres safeguard the genes from gaining deleted as cells continue to divide. The telomeres are added to the end of chromosomes by a different enzyme, telomerase ((Figure)), whose exploration helped in the expertise of how these repeated chromosome ends room maintained. The telomerase enzyme includes a catalytic component and a built-in RNA template. The attaches come the end of the chromosome, and DNA nucleotides complementary to the RNA template are included on the 3′ end of the DNA strand. When the 3′ finish of the lagging strand layout is saturated elongated, DNA polymerase can include the nucleotides complementary to the ends of the chromosomes. Thus, the ends of the chromosomes space replicated.


Telomerase and AgingCells that undergo cell department continue to have actually their telomeres shortened because most somatic cells execute not do telomerase. This essentially means that telomere shortening is connected with aging. With the development of modern medicine, preventative wellness care, and healthier lifestyles, the human being life expectations has increased, and there is an enhancing demand for human being to watch younger and have a much better quality that life together they prosper older.

In 2010, scientists uncovered that telomerase can reverse some age-related conditions in mice. This may have potential in regenerative medicine.1 Telomerase-deficient mouse were provided in these studies; these mice have actually tissue atrophy, stem cabinet depletion, organ device failure, and also impaired organization injury responses. Telomerase reactivation in these mice caused expansion of telomeres, lessened DNA damage, reversed neurodegeneration, and improved the function of the testes, spleen, and intestines. Thus, telomere reactivation may have potential for treating age-related conditions in humans.

Cancer is identified by uncontrolled cell department of abnormal cells. The cells accumulate mutations, proliferate uncontrollably, and can move to different parts of the body v a procedure called metastasis. Scientists have actually observed the cancerous cells have significantly shortened telomeres and also that telomerase is energetic in these cells. Interestingly, only after the telomeres to be shortened in the cancer cells did the telomerase end up being active. If the action of telomerase in this cells can be inhibited through drugs throughout cancer therapy, climate the cancerous cells could potentially be quit from more division.

Section Summary

Replication in eukaryotes starts at multiple origins of replication. The system is quite comparable to the in prokaryotes. A inside wall is compelled to start synthesis, which is then prolonged by DNA polymerase together it to add nucleotides one through one come the growing chain. The leading strand is synthesized continuously, vice versa, the lagging strand is synthesized in short stretches dubbed Okazaki fragments. The RNA primers are changed with DNA nucleotides; the DNA Okazaki pieces are attached into one continuous strand by DNA ligase. The end of the chromosomes pose a problem as the primer RNA in ~ the 5’ end of the DNA can not be changed with DNA, and also the chromosome is significantly shortened. Telomerase, one enzyme with an inbuilt RNA template, extends the end by copying the RNA template and also extending one strand that the chromosome. DNA polymerase deserve to then fill in the safety DNA strand making use of the regular replication enzymes. In this way, the end of the chromosomes room protected.

Review Questions

The end of the straight chromosomes are maintained by

helicaseprimaseDNA poltelomerase


i beg your pardon of the following is not a true statement comparing prokaryotic and eukaryotic DNA replication?

Both eukaryotic and prokaryotic DNA polymerases build off RNA primers do by primase.Eukaryotic DNA replication requires multiple replication forks, while prokaryotes replication offers a single origin to promptly replicate the whole genome.DNA replication constantly occurs in the nucleus.Eukaryotic DNA replication involves an ext polymerases 보다 prokaryotic replication.

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Critical thinking Questions

How do the straight chromosomes in standard scale ensure the its ends are replicated completely?

Telomerase has an inbuilt RNA template that extends the 3′ end, so primer is synthesized and also extended. Thus, the ends room protected.


telomeraseenzyme that consists of a catalytic part and an inbuilt RNA template; it attributes to preserve telomeres in ~ chromosome endstelomereDNA at the end of linear chromosomes