What is telomere biology?

What is a telomere and what is its function?

Telomeres, the repetitive DNA repeat sequences at the end of linear eukaryotic chromosomes protecting chromosome ends from degradation and illegitimate recombination, play a crucial role in cell fate and aging.

What is the definition of telomere in biology?

A telomere is the end of a chromosome. Telomeres are made of repetitive sequences of non-coding DNA that protect the chromosome from damage. Each time a cell divides, the telomeres become shorter. Eventually, the telomeres become so short that the cell can no longer divide.

What is a telomere and why is it important?

Telomeres, the specific DNA–protein structures found at both ends of each chromosome, protect genome from nucleolytic degradation, unnecessary recombination, repair, and interchromosomal fusion. Telomeres therefore play a vital role in preserving the information in our genome.

What are the role of telomeres?

The major role of telomeres is to cap the chromosome ends to minimize the loss of DNA during rounds of cell replication.

What are two important functions of telomeres?

The telomeres are special structures on the chromosome ends that are essential for providing protection from enzymatic end-degradation and maintaining chromosomal and genomic stability.

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Are telomeres junk DNA?

The telomerase gene controls the activity of the telomerase enzyme, which helps produce telomeres, the caps at the end of each strand of DNA that protect the chromosomes within our cells. … “These DNA sequences tend to be considered as ‘junk DNA’ or dark matters in our genome, and they are difficult to study.

Why telomeres are called biological clock?

In the DNA replication process, “At the tip of each chromosome reside approximately 10,000 base pairs of telomeric DNA,” all of which repeat the TTAGGG (thymine, adenine, guanine) sequence and form a loop at the end of each chromosome. … Therefore, telomeres have been called the biological clock.

What is Nondisjunction?


Nondisjunction means that a pair of homologous chromosomes has failed to separate or segregate at anaphase so that both chromosomes of the pair pass to the same daughter cell. This probably occurs most commonly in meiosis, but it may occur in mitosis to produce a mosaic individual.

How telomeres are lost?

In addition to gradual telomere shortening during cell division, the loss of telomere function can also occur as a result of stochastic events in which large blocks of telomeric repeat sequences are lost in a single rapid deletion event.

How do telomeres work?

Our chromosomes have protective structures located at their ends called telomeres. These protect our chromosomes by preventing them from damage or fusion with other chromosomes. Telomeres are made up of thousands of repeats of the same DNA sequence, bound by a special set of proteins called shelterin.

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How many telomeres does a chromosome have?

Each of these chromatids will be capped with the telomere structure on either end (and a single centromere structure in the middle of each sister chromatid). Therefore, a single chromosome in metaphase would have four total telomeres, two on each sister chromatid.

Do telomeres replicate?

The ends of linear chromosomes, called telomeres, protect genes from getting deleted as cells continue to divide. … Once the lagging strand is elongated by telomerase, DNA polymerase can add the complementary nucleotides to the ends of the chromosomes and the telomeres can finally be replicated.

Do telomeres contain genes?

Telomeres do indeed play an essential role in stabilizing the ends of chromosomes, but they do not contain active genes. Instead, telomeres contain an array of highly repeated DNA sequences and specific binding proteins that form a unique structure at the end of the chromosome.