Telomeres2008 - Telomeraseandtelomerelength 32607 Telomeres...

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Telomerase and telomere length 3-26-07
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Telomeres are chromosome ‘end caps’ that consist of thousands of the DNA non-coding repeat, TTAGGG - In a sense, these end caps act like shoelace tips by: preventing (non-homologous end joining)
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Facts about telomere length It is genetically determined It is highly variable from species to species and from individual to individual: 5-15 kb in humans; 25-150 kb in mice; ( not proportional w lifespan) It is variable from cell type to cell type in adult It is variable from chromosome to chromosome It is variable from cell to cell It goes down with age
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Relevance of telomere maintenance/length Cells: Telomere length determines the replicative life span of a cell in tissue culture Shortening of telomeres in tissue culture cells results in cells reaching their proliferation limit, “Hayflick limit”, and permanent G0 cell cycle arrest (senescence). Other effects of shortening : apoptosis and genomic instability If you artificially maintain the telomere length the cells become immortalized Organisms Crucial in the germ line to maintain species over generations Cellular aging has been linked with organismal aging, but the evidence for this link is sparse. Limiting cell proliferation capacity might be related to tumor prevention. By extrapolation from cells: if you artificially maintain telomere length in an organism would you immortalize it as well…?
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Telomere maintenance issues and protection mechanisms: Chromosome ends are recognized as breaks and trigger the repair enzymes, chromosome fusion, or
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This note was uploaded on 04/14/2009 for the course BIO 4400 taught by Professor Tumbar,td during the Spring '07 term at Cornell University (Engineering School).

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Telomeres2008 - Telomeraseandtelomerelength 32607 Telomeres...

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