What are the steps of DNA replication?
The steps of DNA replication are:
- Initiation: The double helix of DNA is unwound by helicase, an enzyme that breaks the hydrogen bonds between the two strands.
- Primer synthesis: Short RNA primers are synthesized by the enzyme primase, which mark the starting points for DNA synthesis.
- Elongation: DNA polymerase synthesizes new strands of DNA using the original strands as templates. It adds nucleotides to the growing strands by following the base-pairing rules of A-T and C-G.
- Ligation: Gaps in the newly synthesized strands are sealed by ligase, an enzyme that joins the ends of the strands together.
- Termination: The replication of the DNA molecule is completed when the two strands of the double helix rewind and the two copies of the DNA molecule separate.
Overall, DNA replication is a complex and highly accurate process that ensures that each daughter cell receives a complete set of genetic instructions and is able to function properly. It is also important in the study of genetics and molecular biology, as it allows researchers to understand how DNA is organized and how it is passed from one generation to the next.