Dna Replication Research Paper

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DNA replication, or DNA synthesis, is the process in which makes a copy of itself prior to cell division. Every cell needs a copy of genetic material. The cell needs an entire copy of the DNA molecule, so for humans that means 46 chromosomes in 23 pairs. Even though a cell needs an entire copy of the DNA, it only uses a portion of it. There are three major steps to DNA synthesis: binding of the enzyme to the DNA, unwinding and unzipping of the DNA, and synthesis of new complementary strand. In the first major step of DNA replication enzymes bind to specific areas of DNA called replication origins. In eukaryotes, like us, there are numerous binding sites that start at the same time because DNA molecules are so large that it would take too long to start at one end and go to the other. However, in prokaryotes there is only one single, circular DNA molecule so there is only one replication origin. The replication in these cells begins at one point and goes in both directions until the whole circular chromosome…show more content…
DNA is wound in a double helix structure because of an attraction of charges. Helicase breaks the hydrogen bonds that hold the base pairs, adenine and thymine, guanine and cytosine, together. The separation of the two single strands of DNA forms a Y shape, known as a replication fork. These two separated strands act as a guide for the new strands to form. The final major step in DNA replication is synthesizing the new DNA strands. DNA polymerase is an enzyme that creates DNA molecules. This happens by assembling nucleotides, which are the building blocks of DNA. The DNA polymerase reads the new DNA base and brings in the matching nucleotide. This process of reading the base and bringing in the complementary nucleotide continues until the next replication origin is reached. These enzymes are essential to DNA
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