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Unformatted text preview: Most eukaryotic chromosomes are protected by a buffer of noncoding DNA (the telomere) consisting of short, repeating sequences (the telomere repeat) When primer removed, it leaves a gap at the 5 end of the new DNA strand DNA polymerase cant fill- causing the chromosome to shorten with each replication With each replication, some telomere repeats are lost Telomerase An enzyme that lengthens the telomere Consists of proteins and an RNA molecule Stops the shortening of telomeres by adding telomere repeats to chromosome ends An RNA section binds to DNA and is the template for addition of telomere repeats o Active only in rapidly dividing embryonic cells, in germ cells- and in cancerous somatic cells o Generally not active in somatic cells, which have limited life span...
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- Spring '09