The DNA Replication Process

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All living things on earth are made up of cells that contain DNA. Deoxyribonucleic acid or DNA is the genetic material of living things that can be found in the nucleus of the cells (Alcamo, 1996). It contains the genes and the genetic codes that contain the information that are essential for life’s functions which are passed from generations to generations. DNA composes of two polynucleotide chains twisted around each other in the form of a double helix. According to Alcamo (1996), each strand of the DNA double helix can act as a template for the synthesis of a new complementary strand as it contains a sequence of nucleotides that is exactly complementary to the nucleotide sequence of its partner strand. DNA replication is semi-conservative. Thus, two identical molecules of DNA are formed during DNA replication of one helix of DNA. Each new molecule of DNA contains one strand of parental DNA which is from the original helix and one strand of new DNA when DNA molecule is copied. DNA replication is a process that all cells must go through and occur before cell division (Corazon, 2010). There are several steps involve during DNA replication which are initiation, elongation, termination and proofreading and correction (refer to Figure 1 in Appendix 1).
Firstly, the process of DNA replication starts with initiation. The initiation refers to the process of unwinding of the DNA double helix. It occurs in the specific area of a chromosome known as the origins that contain a series of codes that attract helicase (Corazon, 2010). Bryant and Aves (2011) stated that “the initiation of DNA replication is important and highly regulated process in the cell division cycle” (p. 1119). In the process of DNA replication, some enzymes are involved s...

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