RHYS LEWIS, AHS, DECD, UNISA / EQUINOX GRAPHICS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY RHYS LEWIS, AHS, DECD, UNISA / EQUINOX GRAPHICS / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Animation showing the DNA damage that can be caused by overexposure to sunlight. Sunlight contains ultraviolet radiation, which can cause chemical changes in the structure of DNA. The view zooms in to a sunbather, showing a strand of DNA in a cell in her skin. UV radiation (pink) hits two adjacent thymine bases (red) on one of the DNA strands. Thymine contains a double bond in a ring structure, and the UV light can break this bond, leading to the formation of new bonds between adjacent thymine bases. The resulting thymine dimer disrupts the DNA molecule, preventing it replicating correctly. This is the leading cause of melanoma skin cancer. It is short-wavelength UVB radiation that causes this type of damage.
Model release not required. Property release not required.