Do telomeres appear at just one end of the chromosome?

Do telomeres appear at just one end of the chromosome?

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I have just studied DNA Replication for my Biology Class and I have this question that leaves me stuck, though I have tried to figure it out myself.

During telomere replication, I am aware Telomerase elongates the 3' end of the template strand on both molecules and then DNA repair Polymerase comes in to fill in the gap that could not be previously synthesised after the last primer. After this is complete, we would have the T-loop formation and Shelterin complex arrangement to protect these ends and form what we know as telomeres. However, if we take both DNA molecules, this only happens at one end of each of them, right? As the other end would correspond to the leading strand.

So I am confused: do telomeres just appear at one end of the chromosome?

This is a great question! The issue- the "paradox" of replication of linear chromosomes- of trying to filling in the unreplicated region (an overhanging 3' end) should technically be an issue only for one 3' end of each chromosome on any round of replication, as one new 3' end is produced by leading stand synthesis, and the other- the one with the issue- by lagging strand synthesis. However, both ends will have telomeres, they simply trade off being the end with the issue, in each round of replication. Or you could say, in a single round of replication, one sister will have an issue at the right end end, and the other sister will have the issue at the left hand end.


  1. Brajin

    it is obvious, you were not mistaken

  2. Vanko

    I join. So happens. Let's discuss this question.

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